County pays $95,000 over failure to provide evidence in jail death

EVERETT — Snohomish County reportedly has agreed to a $95,000 settlement after a protracted public records battle with the mother of a severely allergic Mukilteo man who died in the county jail in 2012.

Attorneys representing Rosemary Saffioti were seeking jail security video footage from the morning her son, Michael, collapsed and died. He’d been booked the day before on a misdemeanor marijuana possession warrant out of Lynnwood.

His mother believes he died because he didn’t get timely medical attention after an allergic reaction to the breakfast he was served in the jail.

Saffioti’s attorneys filed a public records request for the tapes, but initially were told the video didn’t exist.

Eventually, the county turned over the footage.

“In our mind, it is about as egregious a violation you can have because it is such crucial evidence,” said Cheryl Snow, who has been representing Saffioti.

A county deputy prosecutor who handles civil cases was not available for comment Tuesday afternoon.

The case is scheduled to go to trial in 2015.

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