A man mistakenly spent 2 years in Hawaii psychiatric hospital files lawsuit against multiple government agencies

According to Honolulu news, Joshua Spriestersbach asked for compensation from multiple government agencies to keep him in the Hawaii psychiatric hospital for more than two years due to mistaken identity.

Despite his repeated claims that he is not the right person they were looking for, the authorities allegedly had him traumatized in Hawaii mental hospital.

The man is now pursuing a federal lawsuit against the hospital authorities and multiple government agencies.

Joshua Spriestersbach’s defense attorney accuses Honolulu Police officers, doctors of the Hawaii state hospital located in Kaneohe, Deputy Public Defenders, and the State Public Department for safety because they showed criminal negligence while handling his case and intentionally violated his constitutional rights.

Hawaii News further reports that the claims also include medical malpractice, false imprisonment, and intent to inflict the emotional distress clauses. 

Man Locked up Because of Mistaken Identity Sues Hawaii
source:usnews.com

It all began in 2017 when Joshua Spriestersbach was sleeping on the sidewalk and a Honolulu Police officer detained and charged him with the crimes executed by another drug dealer, thief, and burglar – Thomas Castleberry.

Besides, Joshua Spriestersbach’s fingerprints and snapshots were taken but no one seemed cared enough to notice that neither his fingerprints nor criminal history match the actual criminal record.

Joshua Spriestersbach claims in the lawsuit that he insisted that he is not Castleberry, who was on probation and had a warrant for not showing up to the court. He was given unnecessary antipsychotic medication to keep him delusional.

The lawsuit further added that in February 2018, the Hawaii State Hospital employees took him to identify his Social Security number and state ID to confirm his identity. They showed, at last, that he was not Castleberry. Despite this, he was not released.

joshua spriestersbach and thomas castleberry
source:wwnytv.com

It was then in January 2020, after 2 years and 8 months of his arrest, a medical practitioner further investigated his case and found that Joshua Spriestersbach was right from the beginning. With that, he was quickly released from the additional allegations and from the hospital.

Hawaii central rights group leader Lawson said if the authorities would have done the investigation thoroughly, they would know that Thomas Castleberry had left Hawaii in 2009. 

Thomas Castle berry had been arrested multiple times in Arizona and he is in prison in Alaska according to Lawson. 

Officers mistakenly arrested Joshua just because he responded to one of the officer’s questions that his grandfather’s name was William Castleberry.

“Just a lack of caring. If you are houseless and you struggle with mental health issues, there’s just a lack of caring,” Lawson said.

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