Green Country family files lawsuit over Tulsa Transitional Center inmate deaths

Posted at 8:53 PM, Dec 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-17 15:56:06-05

TULSA - Families of former Tulsa Transitional Center inmates are seeking justice. 

Oklahoma's Department of Corrections is investigating two inmate deaths at the Tulsa Transitional Center in November 2017. 

“Basically they just told me they found him dead, and I asked what happened and they couldn’t tell me," said Rhonda Childers, cousin of former inmate Richard Eubanks. 

She hadn't heard from him in years until the phone call. 

“What do you mean? He died of what? Well, they just wouldn’t answer no questions.”

She remembered seeing a similar story, the one of inmate David Walden two days before. 

“[It's] like you’re in a nightmare and you’re awake," said David's father Ronald Walden. 

He and his wife got the same call. 

“I thought it was a joke.”

After news broke their phones wouldn't stop ringing. 

“Guy said David was screaming at the top of his voice all day wanting medical assistance.”

He said ten to twenty inmates told them they didn't have the full story. 

“They said finally he started praying. He kept saying over and over, 'Help me God.'"

Friday, the families filed a wrongful death lawsuit against CoreCivic, the company who runs and operates the facility. 

In a statement the company said it hasn't received the lawsuit so it can't comment. 

But they take the well-being of those in their care seriously, and it's cooperating with the Department of Corrections' investigation. 

“They had a duty to provide medical care and they breached that duty by not providing medical care, or not allowing them to get medical care," said the families' attorney Greg Denney. 

He said he has evidence of negligence by staff and illegal activity in the facility. 

“They both asked for medical treatment repeatedly and were ultimately denied medical treatment right up until their death," he said. 

“Knowing that he died and I wasn’t there with him. That’s the hardest part," wept Walden's father.

The Department of Corrections cannot comment on pending litigation, but said its investigation is ongoing. 

The families' attorney claims the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation is also investigating the incidents, but 2 Works for You reached out to OSBI and have not heard back. 

The Tulsa Transitional Center is located at 302 West Archer Street and is described on the website as a 390-bed halfway house that opened in 1995. 

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