The State has been ordered to compensate three prisoners for a beating they received at the Port of Spain prison back in 2018.
Darren Romeo, Kernell Rausseau, and Shaquille Rogers are to receive over $130,000 each, after the sued the State for the incident which occurred on January 23, 2018.
Master Martha Alexander made the award on Tuesday, at a virtual hearing, after the State accepted liability for assault and battery.
A fourth prisoner, Gregory Goodridge, who was also beaten, had his assessment hearing adjourned pending a settlement with the State.
The men said they were in their cells when a group of prison guards in riot gear entered the area where their cells were located.
They said while inmates were leaving their cells on the officers’ orders, an inmate was slapped, causing an outburst from the rest of the prison population.
The officers left, returned to the cell block, and fired tear gas into the cells, then began beating the prisoners.
Rogers said he was badly beaten and then he and the others were taken to another area of the prison, where the beatings continued.
He said his hands were tied with plastic tie-straps and he begged the officers to take him for treatment.
The lawsuits said the beating was captured by another inmate on a cellphone and shared on social media.
The men claimed the incident was never investigated by the authorities.
Rausseau told the court “Not because I am in prison I should be beaten like a dog so.”
Alexander ordered $85,000 in general damages and $45,000 in exemplary damages for each of them.
She also ordered that they should be paid interest at a rate of two and half per cent from when the case was filed in 2019 to when liability was accepted.
Additionally, the State was ordered to pay the trio’s legal costs for bringing the lawsuit.