She cried for help, but was allegedly beaten to a pulp by merciless prison guards.
Cheryl Weimar, 51, may never move her arms or legs again after becoming a quadriplegic when she was “manhandled” by corrections officers at Lowell Correctional Institution located in Ocala, Florida back on Aug. 21, according to her lawsuit.
That was the day when four Lowell guard defendants (listed as John Does 1 through 4) allegedly dragged Weimar out of the eye of surveillance cameras while she was experiencing “medical and psychological emergencies” and inflicted “excessive force to brutally beat [her] within an inch of death.”
Weimar believes she was targeted by guards who ganged up on her after she asked to be relieved from toilet cleaning duty because, the lawsuit states, she was in pain stemming from a “pre-existing hip condition.”
“They’re asking her to clean around a toilet, and she’s telling them, ‘I have this hip issue, and I’m physically unable to do it,’” her attorney, Ryan Andrews told Oxygen.com. “The guards started to pressure her and yell at her... Cheryl has a history of mental illness. She was scared and they got physical."
Andrews argues that the guards could have considered her limitations and moved her to another detail.
“She’s asking for accommodations because she couldn't do this work,” he said. “Instead they just beat her.”
As the situation allegedly became more serious, Weimer claims she lacked any means to protect herself: “With a bad hip and nothing more than cleaning supplies, [Weimar] was defenseless,” the document states.
Weimar’s lawsuit notes that while enduring the alleged physical assaults, she began to experience crippling mental effects. What’s more, the lawsuit notes that Weimar — who was imprisoned for a conviction of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon back in 2014, according to the Florida Department of Corrections — had “known physical and mental impairments which were serious medical needs and conditions.”
Andrews wouldn’t specify what her ailments were, but adamantly believes the guards should have followed Florida Department of Corrections (FDC) procedure and “called medical personnel” and "declare a medical emergency immediately.”
Rather than declare an “inmate psychological emergency,” the lawsuit claims “FDC employees continued to brutally beat and manhandle [Weimar] when it should have been objectively obvious and apparent that she needed emergency medical attention…”
Perhaps most notably, the lawsuit pins blame on the guards for purposely changing the venue, claiming they physically dragged Weimar “to a wheelchair with her head bouncing along the ground” outside of the compound “so they could continue their brutal attack in the area that was not covered by surveillance cameras."
There, the guards “slammed” Weimar’s head to the ground and “brutally beat her with blows to her head, neck and back,” according to the suit.
In the melee, Weimar was allegedly elbowed, causing her neck to snap.
“They used fists and one of the guards dropped an elbow on the back of her neck,” Andrews said. “They tossed her like a rag doll.”
The suit characterizes the physical aggression mounted against Weimar as “excessive” and that it was used “maliciously and sadistically for the very purpose of causing harm.”
Oxygen.com’s attempts to reach Florida Department of Corrections were not immediately returned.
Meanwhile, the bedridden Weimar is facing a bleak future. She’s breathing through a tracheostomy, getting nourished with a PEG tube, and “will require around-the-clock medical care for the rest of her life,” the suit suggests.
And her husband, Karl Weimar, is experiencing “mental anguish” as well as "a loss of capacity for enjoyment of life” now that his wife has become a quadriplegic.
Moving forward, Andrews is hoping to verify the identity of each guard whom he believes beat Weimar. He added that each of the guards in question has since been reassigned to “perimeter duty” and isn’t directly dealing with inmates at Lowell, one of the largest women’s correctional facilities in the country.
And he is also seeking to get his hands on surveillance video that he hopes captured some of the alleged suffering Weimar underwent before she was moved.
“A common person — even if they know this stuff goes on in prison, they may not care that much,” he said. “But when they see video, that's when people start to go, ‘Oh my god!’”
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.