- Associated Press - Thursday, October 1, 2015

MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. (AP) - Macomb County has no interest in settling a lawsuit brought by the family of a man who died in its jail, according to the county executive.

The attorney representing David Stojcevski’s family is “trying to strong arm” the county out of millions of dollars, Mark Hackel told reporters Thursday.

Stojcevski, 32, of Roseville died in June 2014 in the jail. The lawsuit was filed earlier this year and says he suffered serious withdrawals from drug use and died after serving 16 days of a 30-day careless driving sentence.

Video shows him hallucinating in his cell and shaking with seizures. The FBI is reviewing circumstances surrounding the death.

Officers at the Mount Clemens facility checked Stojcevski’s welfare numerous times and notified contracted medical staff, according to Hackel.

Hackel, a former Macomb County sheriff, said Thursday that Stojcevski family attorney Robert Ihrie told county legal officials before filing the complaint that: “This is going to be a media spectacle.”

“Obviously, he made good on his promise,” Hackel said. “The attorney on behalf of the family decided to take this away from the court of law, and into the court of public opinion.”

But Ihrie told reporters later that he sought a settlement with the county to avoid filing the lawsuit and to avoid publicity.

Ihrie said he met with county lawyers and threw out figure of $25 million to $30 million when asked how much monetary damages might be.

“Of course, nobody will know what a jury will do,” he told the Detroit Free Press. “But I guess my point is that, three times before filing litigation to avoid litigation and avoid unnecessary media attention, we attempted to have a discussion with the county regarding a resolution, and we were not contacted to have such a discussion.”

The lawsuit names the county, Sheriff Anthony Wickersham, various jail employees and the company that provides medical care at the facility.

A hearing on a request that the lawsuit be dismissed is scheduled for Oct. 14.

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