- Associated Press - Monday, January 16, 2017

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - The family of a Topeka man who died in a hospital while serving a prison term in Leavenworth contends in a federal lawsuit that he died because he didn’t receive proper medical care.

Otis Bradley, 25, collapsed in his cell at the U.S. Penitentiary in Leavenworth in December 2014 while serving a 57-month sentence for being a felon in possession of a firearm, according to the lawsuit.

The family alleges that after Bradley collapsed, doctors at St. Luke’s Cushing Hospital in Leavenworth found he had abdominal pain, facial and hand numbness, drooling and eye twitching and said he would need further evaluation with prison medical staff, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported (https://bit.ly/ouF3m7 ).

The lawsuit alleges that in a follow-up appointment Dr. Kristine Aulepp, who is named in the lawsuit, found Bradley needed no further intervention. He continued to deteriorate and later diagnosed with gallstones, pancreatitis and diabetes and transferred to St. Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, according to the lawsuit.

The relatives said in the lawsuit they were not notified that Bradley was hospitalized for nearly three weeks until being notified on Feb. 4, 2015, that he was on life support and they needed to go the hospital to “make decisions.”

“I know my son went through hell before he died and that is the hardest thing to deal with,” said his mother, Brenda Penrod.

According to correspondence between Penrod and the family’s lawyer, severe pancreatitis led to organ shutdown. He had a heart attack and, although doctors were able to restart his heart, he lost brain function.

The lawsuit alleges violation of Bradley’s constitutional right to be protected from cruel and unusual punishment, failure to provide reasonable care and wrongful death. The suit asks for $75,000.

Federal Bureau of Prisons spokesman Justin Long said the agency doesn’t comment on ongoing litigation.

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Information from: The Topeka (Kan.) Capital-Journal, https://www.cjonline.com

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