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Nick and Joyce Christie of Ohio were on vacation in Florida two years ago, Nick was 62-years old at the time. When he became depressed and began to show signs of erratic behavior, Joyce called 911 seeking help to get Nick to a hospital to be given his medication. That's when the Christie's nightmare began. Rather than taking Nick to the hospital as his wife requested, Lee County Sheriff's deputies took him to jail for "disorderly intoxication."
In a lawsuit filed in December 2011, Joyce Christie alleges Nick was pepper sprayed 10 times over a 48-hour period, at times while in a restraint chair.
Tom DePolis spent more than 30 years in law enforcement at the Tampa Police Department and Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. He's seen first-hand the effects of pepper spray and knows its limitations. He can see no reason for deputies to repeatedly pepper spray Nick Christie since he was already in custody.
"The purpose is to temporarily incapacitate someone -- temporarily, that's the key word, so you can restrain them," says DePolis.
Monshay Gibbs was a deputy trainee at the jail at the time. In a video deposition, she testified that she thought the way Nick Christie was treated was excessive.
"He had a spit mask on and was naked," she said on the video while under oath. Gibbs testified that Christie pleaded with guards to take off the spit mask because he couldn't breathe.
He later died at the hospital. His heart failed from the shock of the pepper spray. The Lee County Sheriffs Office declined to comment on our story because of Joyce Christie's wrongful death lawsuit, which is scheduled for trial the middle of next year.
No one was ever charged with a crime in the death of Nick Christie. The Lee County State Attorney cleared the sheriff's office of any responsibility.
Ironic that the report of Nick Christie's death was originally a Fox News investigative report, although it's doubtful that Bill O'Reilly and Megyn Kelly pay attention to facts even if they are from their own network.
Then gain, who would think to find facts at Fox News?