Parents of inmate who died at Bridgewater State Hospital to receive $3 million

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The parents of a 23-year-old mental health patient who died at Bridgewater State Hospital five years ago will receive $3 million to settle a civil rights lawsuit alleging that prison guards were responsible for their son’s death, according to Benjamin R. Novotny, an attorney for the parents.

The settlement, disclosed Tuesday, follows a February Boston Globe story detailing the death of Joshua K. Messier as he lay strapped to a bed while seven prison guards stood by. A subsequent investigation by Governor Deval Patrick’s administration led him to discipline several Department of Corrections staffers.

“While nothing can bring back Joshua Messier to his family, we believe this will be a fair resolution to a sad case,” said Attorney General Martha Coakley, who was representing the Department and the guards.

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