Care home forced disabled Missouri man to fight to the death

FULTON, Mo. - A 62-page civil lawsuit filed in federal court names 18 defendants in the wrongful death case of 31-year-old Carl DeBrodie.

It also details what may have happened to DeBrodie in the months leading up to his death.

Carl’s aunt, Carol Samson, said Carl had a developmental disability. He was a ward of the state and lived at Second Chance Group Home in Fulton, Missouri.

On April 14, 2017, the morning that Carl’s assisted living home was set to change ownership, it was reported that Carl had wandered away. One week later, Carl’s remains were found in a trash bin, encased in concrete, in a storage unit a few miles from the group home.

New court documents reveal Carl most likely died six months before he was reported missing. Rudy Veit, the attorney for Carl’s family, said there were numerous individuals who could have prevented this.

According to the civil lawsuit, in the fall of 2016, Sherry Paulo, the manager of the assisted living home and her husband Anthony Flores, also an employee of the home, made Carl and another resident stay overnight in the basement of their personal home without beds or a mattress.

The lawsuit alleges that Carl and the resident were forced to fight each other for the amusement of Flores, Paulo, and her family.

According to the civil lawsuit, Flores was awakened by Carl's screams and found him non-responsive and convulsing on the basement floor. The family attorney alleges Flores and Paulo didn’t call 911 but instead put Carl in a bathtub, where he died.

Carl’s family said they didn't check on him the year prior to his death because they were told they couldn’t.

“They were instructed not to contact him because it agitated him and created other problems,” Veit said. “They entrusted his care to a state agency, who they thought they could trust.”

Veit said there were nurses and special services representatives who were supposed to check on Carl every month. He said they kept signing paperwork that he was okay when he was dead. Veit said the system failed Carl.

Part of this case is being handled by the FBI. Veit believes that criminal charges will be coming.