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Woman who gave birth in jail toilet sues Snohomish County

A Lake Stevens woman who gave birth in a jail toilet claims that Snohomish County jail staff — who knew she was pregnant — ignored her desperate pleas for help while she labored. In a federal lawsuit that settled out of court before trial, the woman accused jail staff of violating her constitutional rights by denying her medical care.

The woman gave birth to her son five days after being arrested for investigation of trafficking stolen property. She claimed jail medical staff told her to lie down and use a feminine napkin as she screamed from labor pains, failing to act when her water broke.

“They simply didn’t believe she was about to have a baby,” Kenan Isitt, one of the woman’s attorneys, told

Isitt said he and his client hope the lawsuit and settlement prompt jails to do more to protect and assist pregnant inmates.

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