FORT SMITH -- The jury trial for a federal civil rights lawsuit from the family of a man who died at the Sebastian County jail from acute dehydration and malnutrition in 2021 has been moved to 9 a.m. May 6, 2024, in Fort Smith.
The new date was set in a final scheduling order filed Wednesday, according to court records.
The estate of Larry Eugene Price Jr. of Fort Smith filed the lawsuit Jan. 13 against Sebastian County; the Oklahoma City-based Turn Key Health Clinics, which provides medical services to the county jail; Jawaun Lewis, a psychiatrist and Turn Key's director of psychiatry and mental health services; and Christeena Ferguson, a nurse and former Turn Key employee, according to court records.
The lawsuit also lists 20 unidentified correctional officers or medical staff at the jail who worked either for the Sheriff's Office or Turn Key as defendants.
The lawsuit argues Price -- who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and other mental health disorders, in addition to intellectual developmental disorder -- had his federal constitutional rights violated by being deprived of necessary medical and mental health care while held at the jail as a pretrial detainee, leading to his wrongful death. It also accuses the defendants of medical negligence and violating their correctional standards of care under state wrongful death and survival statutes.