New complaint says Carl DeBrodie died from fight-related injuries

1 year 10 months 1 week ago Wednesday, May 30 2018 May 30, 2018 Wednesday, May 30, 2018 11:08:00 AM CDT May 30, 2018 in News
By: Steve Lambson, News Content Manager

JEFFERSON CITY - A new complaint filed in the wrongful death lawsuit for the death of Carl DeBrodie said he died from injuries he got while being forced to fight another person.

DeBrodie was reported missing from Second Chance Homes in Fulton in April 2017. His body was found encased in concrete at a storage facility a short time later.

According to the complaint, in 2016, Sherry Paulo - a "qualified disability professional" at Second Chance - was assigned to work with DeBrodie one-on-one. For some months, Paulo reportedly took DeBrodie and another Second Chance resident to stay the night at her own home in Fulton.

There, she allegedly forced DeBrodie to do manual labor around the house with no compensation. DeBrodie and the other Second Chance resident would sleep in Paulo's basement, according to the complaint, with no beds or mattresses. Paulo also allegedly forced DeBrodie and the other resident to "physically fight each other for the benefit and amusement of...Paulo and her family."

The complaint said DeBrodie, as a result of this fight, got six broken ribs and other injuries, like black eyes and bruises.

No one noticed these injuries, the document said, because DeBrodie wasn't getting the regular visits and checkups he should have by other caretakers at Second Chance.

At some point between late October and late November 2016, a caretaker named Anthony Flores, who is related to Paulo, heard DeBrodie in the basement screaming. He found DeBrodie seizing and convulsing on the basement floor.

The complaint detailed what apparently happened next:

"Instead of calling 911 or for other emergency assistance, Defendant Flores and [the other Second Chance resident] carried Carl upstairs and placed him into bathtub with the shower running. At this point...Paulo had also gotten involved and instructed...Flores to go downstairs and leave this to her."

"Paulo refused to call 911 or for other emergency assistance, and instead allowed Carl—who was bleeding from his nose and mouth—to continue to convulse in the bathtub....no life-saving measures were attempted that night...Carl died as a result from the episode.

According to the complaint, DeBrodie's body stayed in the bathtub for two or three days before "he was ultimately placed into the City of Fulton trash can, encased in concrete, and placed into a storage unit."

Paulo and Flores are among 18 defendants named in the wrongful death suit, filed by family and friends of DeBrodie. The suit alleges repeated denial of proper care and attention to DeBrodie, as well as refusals by Second Chance staff to let his family see him.

The defendants include a number of state departments and officials, who allegedly failed to have "a policy, procedure, or custom in place whereby reports of mandated, quarterly or monthly face-to-face contacts could be audited and/or verified by an individual other than the one making the report." This failure, the complaint alleged, allowed DeBrodie's caretakers to conceal details about his well-being, health the care he was receiving.

A jury trial has been scheduled for March 2020 in the case. Court records said the trial is expected to last eight days.

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