County settles lawsuit involving death of inmate

NEWPORT — Lincoln County has agreed to pay $850,000 to the family of a man who died in the jail in Newport in 2018.

According to a press release from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office regarding the settlement, at about 10:30 p.m. on Oct. 25, 2018, during a routine welfare check, corrections deputies discovered Joshua Parker Gilleo, of Depoe Bay, unconscious and hanging from a bed sheet attached to a light fixture in his single-occupant cell. Deputies performed CPR, administered an automated external defibrillator and called medics but were unable to revive him. Gilleo was pronounced deceased by arriving paramedics at 10:54 p.m.

The Newport Police Department and Lincoln County District Attorney’s Office investigated the death and determined that Gilleo committed suicide. His estate filed a tort claim against the county, and its insurance carrier recently agreed to pay $850,000 to settle the case. The settlement is pending court approval.

According to the press release, although the sheriff’s office maintains that its staff acted properly, and the county continues to deny any wrongdoing, “because of the costs and uncertainty of litigation, and on the advice of the county’s insurance carrier, the decision was made to resolve the matter if it could be done for an agreeable amount of money.”


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