A police officer who suffered a serious head injury while on duty in 2013 is now suing the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service, claiming that the RCIPS was negligent in failing to provide him with proper headwear protection.
The officer, constable Fitzroy Talbert, was responding to an incident at the Pirates Cove Bar in East End around 1 a.m. on March 22, 2013.
Although he was provided with a bulletproof vest, Mr. Talbert did not receive any form of protective headwear, his lawsuit states. The RCIPS also did not conduct a risk assessment of the incident reported at the Pirates Cove Bar before sending officers there, according to his lawsuit.
When Mr. Talbert and another constable exited their police vehicle, they noticed a large crowd gathering outside the bar. Mr. Talbert’s lawsuit states that he noticed a number of individuals there that “were of interest” to the police.
But suddenly and without warning, an unidentified person threw a rock at the officers, striking Mr. Talbert and fracturing his skull. Mr. Talbert was knocked unconscious and immediately taken to the Cayman Islands Hospital for treatment.
There, he received emergency surgery to remove a part of his skull and bone fragments that had gone underneath brain tissue, his lawsuit states. Police arrested a 19-year-old man in relation to the incident a few days later, but the teenager was never charged. Police confirmed on Tuesday that no one was ever charged.
Since the incident, Mr. Talbert has undergone extensive medical and rehabilitative treatment. Other effects from the incident have included seizures, severe headaches, difficulties speaking and walking, deterioration in eyesight, muscle spasms, memory loss, depression, a loss of self-confidence, shortened concentration span, and an inability to exercise, according to his lawsuit, which is posted on the site OffshoreAlert.
“Had the [RCIPS] provided the Plaintiff with protective headwear equipment at the time of the incident, his head injuries could have been avoided,” his lawsuit states.
Mr. Talbert, who is still a constable, is seeking general and special damages, as well as claims for medical treatment costs.