EUGENE, Ore. — Lane County will soon pay a hefty price for how it allegedly treated a former inmate. A nearly five-year-old lawsuit came to an end Tuesday.
Lane County commissioners voted to approve a $500,000 settlement in the case of Mark Kemp.
Kemp was arrested back in 2008. He was mentally ill at the time and alleged that law enforcement and county medical officials mistreated him and neglected his medical needs.
The county says it believes this was the best decision in this situation.
“Stretching it out and going to a jury trial. Whatever may have prevailed in the jury trial, it would have been a long expensive for all parties involved. We found it best to just arrive at the settlement,” said Pat Farr, Lane County Commissioner.
In an email to county staff, the judge expressed his support for the decision saying:
“The case had a very real possibility of a jury verdict and judgment double or more the size of this settlement.”
The settlement will be paid to the Civil Liberties Defense Center, the Eugene legal rights non-profit organization that was working with Kemp.
Some of the money left behind will pay for attorneys, but a majority of the money will be held in a trust for Kemp.