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Verdicts and Settlements

Ruelas v. State of California - $10.1 Million Verdict - San Bernadino, California

July 2010

In July of 2010, a jury in San Bernadino County decided that the civil rights of four male wards were violated during their incarceration at now-closed Herman G. Stark Youth Correctional Facility in Chino. Plaintiffs, Guillermo Ruelas, Oscar Miranda, Alejandro Espinoza and Martin Mendoza had claimed numerous incidents of cruel punishment at the hands of correctional counselor James Shelby during their stint at Stark from 1999 to 2004. The jury sided with the wards 12-0 that Shelby forced them to engage in sex in exchange for illegal contraband and favorable treatment. The jury also held Xavier Ruiz, then superintendent of the facility from 1999 to 2004, and Jerry Harper, a director of the California Youth Authority from 2000 to 2003, were responsible for imprisoning wards under conditions “that exposed them to a substantial risk of serious harm and/or sexual abuse.”

Ruelas v. State of California - $10.1 Million Verdict - San Bernadino

Practice area(s): Child Abuse, Civil Litigation, Juvenile, Litigation, Personal Injury, Sexual Harassment

Court: San Bernadino

Gary A. Dordick

Owner | Managing Attorney

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