New York state has settled a federal lawsuit for $3.5 million over the death of a Darryl Thompson, 15, who died during a 2006 altercation in the now-closed Tryon Boys Residentail Center, reports the Albany Times-Union. Thompson’s civil rights lawsuit helped trigger a U.S. Department of Justice probe that forced the state to look at changes in the way its youth prisons are operated.
“This was a tragic, very upsetting case,” said E. Robert Keach III, who who sued the state on behalf of Thompson’s family. The death occurred after Darryl Thompson had been denied recreational time, which led to a shouting match with two employees. The aides restrained Thompson, and they didn’t release him until he became unconscious, despite his complaining that he couldn’t breathe, the lawsuit said. A grand jury declined to indict any worker involved in the death.