Prison settles lawsuit filed after inmate’s death
OGDEN, Utah (AP) — A lawsuit filed in the death of a Utah man killed at the state prison has been settled.
Jeffrey Vigil, 24, was beaten and stabbed to death after guards ignored warnings that he would be in danger from members of a rival gang if he was moved to another part of the prison, the lawsuit claimed.
Terms of the settlement reached Thursday were not immediately available, the Standard-Examiner reported . The case filed by his widow originally sought $20 million in damages.
Prison authorities did not immediately respond to messages from The Associated Press seeking comment on the case Monday.
Vigil was in prison for almost a year after violating his parole when he was beaten to death in 2016. The suit also claimed the area was understaffed and guards were slow to react to the attack. It says authorities canceled a 911 call at one point, contributing to a 45-minute delay before he reached the hospital, the suit said.
The suit claimed prison officers were warned repeatedly that Vigil, a member of the Ogden Trece gang, could be targeted by members of the rival Crips gang if he was moved.
Vigil was originally in a maximum security area, but was transferred to a lower-security cell, “possibly as a reward for good behavior,” the suit said.
He was attacked hours after being transferred, the suit states. Authorities say Ramon Luis Rivera, 31, stabbed him, choked him to unconsciousness and kicked him in the head at least 70 times. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty if he’s convicted of aggravated murder.
An attorney for Rivera could not immediately be reached for comment. A second man is accused of preventing Vigil from escaping.