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Settlement for inmate death approved by judge

By Joe Holloway jholloway@marshallnewsmessenger.com
March 12, 2013 at 1:46 a.m.


U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap approved a settlement on Monday between Harrison County and the survivors of Julius Eugene Maloy III, an inmate who died in the county's jail in March 2009 in what was ruled a suicide.

Gilstrap said he was inclined to approve the settlement after their mother, Candle Bogamy, assured him that the money, the total amount of which went undisclosed, would go to Maloy's three children.

He was also concerned about "friends and family" who might be eager to "borrow" some of the kids' money when they become eligible to receive it on their 18th birthdays with either no intention or ability to pay the money back.

"Too many times family and friends seem to know exactly when that oldest child is turning 18," he said. "Before you know it, all the money's gone."

He went on to say the children, who range in age from 11 to 16, will be "prime targets for financial predators" when they receive their portion of the settlement after they turn 18.

"You need to know about that and plan for that," said Gilstrap. "Over the course of my time on the bench and in private practice, I've seen this happen more times than I can count."

Bogamy said she'd do her best to make sure that didn't happen to her kids.

"Basically, all of them want to go to college," she said. "That's what they're going to use the money for.

"I won't let anyone do that."

That was good enough for Gilstrap.

"I believe you and I trust you," he said. "Your representation here today is a big part of why I've approved this settlement today."

While the children stand to inherit most of the settlement after their 18th birthdays, some money will be paid directly to Bogamy immediately to cover some of the immediate needs of the kids. Those sums include $600 for school clothes and supplies for Bogamy's 11-year-old daughter, $1,000 for her 13-year-old daughter and $2,300 for her 16-year-old daughter. The money is intended for school clothes, supplies, and driver's education and college entrance exams for the oldest.

Bogamy indicated that she thought the settlement was in the best interest of the three children.

Bogamy, along with Maloy's wife, Waltrina Mukes-Maloy, and Maloy's parents, Julius Maloy, Jr. and Lela Mae Maloy, brought the suit in Feb. 2011 that called the Harrison County Jail "a deathtrap for inmates who suffer from mental illness, suicidal tendencies and other serious medical conditions" after Maloy hung himself in his cell with a telephone cord.

Maloy, who the plaintiff's complaint asserts had attempted suicide in the past, received suicide counseling and heard voices other people did not hear, was jailed on March 15, 2009 for violation of probation for an assault family violence offense. A "clinical history" included in his autopsy report noted that "on March 24, 2009, around 9:05 p.m., a Harrison County officer found…Maloy hanging from a telephone cord in jail separation Cell A."

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