Appeals Court: Woman Jailed With Men Can Sue Doctor, Nurse Who ID'd Her as Male - NBC 6 South Florida

Appeals Court: Woman Jailed With Men Can Sue Doctor, Nurse Who ID'd Her as Male

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    Woman Held as Man in Jail Can Sue: Appeals Court

    A federal appeals court ruled that a woman can go forward with a lawsuit against a doctor and a nurse at Miami-Dade Corrections who identified her as a male, which led her to be incarcerated with men. NBC 6 Investigator Willard Shepard reports.

    (Published Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2018)

    An appeals court is allowing a woman to sue a doctor and a nurse at Miami-Dade Corrections who identified her as male, which led to her incarceration with men at Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center.

    Veloz Fior de Pichardo flew from her home in the Dominican Republic to Miami in November 2013 for the birth of her grandchild. At the airport, she was arrested on a warrant for a decades-old drug charge she thought had long been dismissed.

    Court documents show when Pichardo first got to the jail, she was strip-searched and listed appropriately as a woman.

    But at the medical unit, a doctor and a nurse saw that she was on hormone replacement therapy and listed her as "male on hormonal treatment transgender" and that she "could go to the general (male) population."

    Part Two of An Exclusive Interview With a Woman Caught in a Jail Gender Mix-up

    [MI] Part Two of An Exclusive Interview With a Woman Caught in a Jail Gender Mix-up
    Part 2 of NBC 6's Willard Shepard's exclusive interview with a woman who was placed with male inmates at a South Florida jail.
    (Published Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016)

    Pichardo was held for hours with 40 male inmates.

    "At that moment what I wanted to do was just to die because I thought that I was going to be raped," Pichardo told NBC 6 through a translator in a previous interview.

    The federal appeals court allowed the lawsuit to go forward against the doctor and nurse, saying in part:

    Exlcusive Interview With Woman Who Was Put in a Male Jail in Miami-Dade

    [MI] Exlcusive Interview With Woman Who Was Put in a Male Jail in Miami-Dade
    NBC 6 Investigator Willard Shepard speaks exclusively to the woman who placed in a male jail in Miami-Dade.
    (Published Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016)

    "Every reasonable prison officer and medical personnel would have known that wrongfully misclassifying a female as a male inmate and placing that female in the male population of a detention facility is unlawful."

    Miami-Dade Corrections told NBC 6 it does not comment on pending litigation.

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