The family of a 31-year-old Missouri man believes his caregiver had him to sleep on a basement floor, forced him to fight another resident for fun and left him to die in a bathtub after he was found "non-responsive and convulsing" sometime in the fall of 2016.
These allegations were revealed in an amended wrongful death lawsuit filed in federal court on Tuesday. The suit was initially filed months after Carl DeBrodie's body was found encased in concrete inside a storage unit. It names 18 defendants, including Second Chance Homes of Fulton, LLC, a residential facility where DeBrodie, a man with developmental disabilities, stayed.
No one has been arrested or charged in connection to DeBrodie's death, according to the Fulton Sun. Carolyn Summers, DeBrodie's mother, first filed the lawsuit in state court earlier this year, and it has since been taken to federal court. It alleges wrongful death, as well as civil rights violations and negligence.
The investigation into DeBrodie's disappearance and death started last year.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Kansas City Star
Fulton police said DeBrodie was reported missing on the morning of April 17, 2017. He was considered to be endangered, police said, "due to mental disability and very limited ability to verbally communicate." The report had said DeBrodie left his residence on foot.
DeBrodie was found dead on April 24, 2017. Court records said his body was found in a trash bin which had been placed into a wooden container. Concrete had been poured inside, encasing his body.
At the time, police told KMIZ they believed DeBrodie had been dead for months.
KMIZ, which reported on the amended suit Wednesday, reported DeBrodie was staying at a Second Chance Homes facility, but sometime before his death, an employee allegedly brought DeBrodie and another resident to stay overnight at her home in Fulton.
While at the home, the suit said, DeBrodie was forced to do manual, unpaid labor and sleep on the floor of the basement without a bed or mattress — all while his health was deteriorating.
DeBrodie and another resident were allegedly forced to physically fight each other for the benefit and amusement of his caregiver and her family. The fights caused serious injuries, including six broken ribs, court records said.
Family members also believe DeBrodie was subjected to verbal and physical abuse from other residents and facility employees in the months leading up to his death.
The lawsuit indicates DeBrodie might have died sometime after Oct. 25, 2016, but before Nov. 24, 2016. Court records said one of the employees was awakened to the sound of DeBrodie screaming one night in the basement. Family members believe he was taken upstairs and placed into a bathtub with the shower running while he was convulsing and bleeding from his nose and mouth.
"On information and belief, no life-saving measures were attempted that night with respect to Carl. Carl died as a result from the episode," the lawsuit said. "Carl remained in the bathtub for two or three days until he was ultimately placed into the City of Fulton trash can, encased in concrete, and placed into a storage unit..."
In addition to the residential facility, the suit also accuses the Callaway County Public Administrator's Office, the Missouri Department of Mental Health and Callaway County Special Services of failing to provide help and follow up with DeBrodie face-to-face.
Neither of the defendants have commented publicly since the amended suit was filed Tuesday.
The family is demanding a jury trial in the case.