A Chicago man who was accidentally locked up while visiting his son in jail has won his lawsuit against the Cook County Sheriff’s office.
If you’re wondering how you get locked up by accident, here’s how.
In July 2014, Farad Polk went to visit his incarcerated son. Officers directed him to”go down the hallway and turn to the right.” Following those directions, Polk saw a door popped open and walked in. The stepped into the room and the steel door shut behind him. After sitting in the small 8-by-8 cell for a few minutes, Polk felt something wasn’t wasn’t right.
He tried to get out, but there was no button to buzz out. Come to find out, he had walked into a cell used for people visiting “highest classification super-maximum security prisoners.” It didn’t help that he happened to make this mistake on the weekend where the rooms are not used and no one checks on them, so no one could hear him screaming for help.
This resulted in Polk being locked in the room for 32 hours with no water, food or access to a toilet. While he was trapped he had to use the bathroom on the same floor he slept on.
It wasn’t until Polk managed to break a water sprinkler that an alarm went off, alerting the Chicago Fire Department to come to the room. Adding insult to injury, the guards handcuffed and held Polk when they arrived. He says that he was traumatized by the event and believed that he would die in the cell. He hasn’t been emotionally or mentally stable enough to visit his son ever since.
The Cook County Sheriff’s department apologized and reached a settlement of $600,000 for Polk’s troubles.