Molly English-Bowers May 6, 2016, 4:54pm


BENTON – A Cahokia man claims he spent eight months in solitary confinement after he was allegedly wrongfully arrested for armed robbery. 

Jerry Outlaw filed the suit April 25 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois against the City of Cahokia, Mayor James Jones, detective Matthew Mason, the County of St. Clair, Rick Watson, Phillip McLaurin and John Does 1-3. He alleges violation of his rights under the U.S. Constitution.

In his complaint, Outlaw alleges he was wrongfully arrested, incarcerated and mistreated by members of the Cahokia Police Department after an armed robbery that took place March 12, 2015.

The plaintiff was arrested March 17, 2015, when he was 19 and charged with armed robbery. According to the complaint, he has an IQ of 63 and the intellect of a 9-year-old. Therefore, the plaintiff alleges he was exceptionally susceptible to coercive interrogation techniques used by police officers following his arrest.

As a result of his alleged coerced confession, Outlaw was charged with armed robbery and detained in the St. Clair County jail for nearly eight months, the suit says.

He was allegedly susceptible to attacks, so he was placed in solitary confinement 24 hours a day for 30 days, according to the complaint. Then on Oct. 20, 2015, the case against the plaintiff was dismissed.

Outlaw alleges he suffered physical harm, mental suffering and loss of a normal life, the suit says.

Among the counts alleged against the defendants are coercive interrogation, false arrest, and conspiracy to deprive him of constitutional rights.

The plaintiff seeks an award of compensatory damages against each defendant, punitive damages against each defendant, and other relief the court deems proper. He also demands a trial by jury. He is represented by LaToya Berry in Belleville.

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois Case number 16-cv-456

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U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois East St. Louis
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East St Louis, IL 62201

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