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John Montin lawsuit: Man sues for $33 million for 20 year stay in hospital

John Montin sues for $33 million after 20 years in a mental ward.
John Montin sues for $33 million after 20 years in a mental ward.
Mawhamba/Wikimedia Commons

John Montin filed a lawsuit against a hospital in Nebraska for $33 million dollars, and his story goes back over 20 years. In 1993, police arrested Montin on a number of charges after he went to a home and claimed that it was his. Police filed a report on a standoff that lasted several hours, but a very different story was told in court. The Christian Post reported on this man's story on July 15.

John Montin, a 52-year-old Florida man, is now back at his home in Florida. The hospital released him last year after a new doctor on staff took the time to test him and give him a new diagnosis. Back in 1993, the jury in a Hayes County courtroom found Montin not guilty due to temporary insanity, and the staff of the Lincoln Regional diagnosed him as delusional. However, the doctors on staff at the time never tested the man themselves. They used police reports as the basis for their diagnosis. Montin spent the next 20 years in the psych ward of the hospital.

Dr. Edward Kelly, a psychiatrist at the hospital, decided to retest Montin, and he discovered that a pain medication the man took for his back created the temporary insanity. Montin stopped taking the medication before his time at the hospital even began. Jon Braaten, Montin's attorney, said the following about the man's retesting and eventual release:

"We were just banging the drums, and they finally had to start listening. It was an injustice, and he was right from the beginning."

Montin returned to Florida soon after his release. A year later, the man owns his own business cleaning the bottom of boats, and he is trying to put his life back together. The 20 years he spent locked up in the mental ward of the hospital took a large chunk of his life away. He never had the chance to marry or have kids, and he missed his own mother's funeral. At the time of his trial in 1993, the jury cleared Montin of all charges expect for the two where they found him not guilty by temporary insanity.

In court, the jury heard a very different story than the story told by the police in their reports. No standoff took place. Montin confronted the people at their home, and he did tell them that their home belonged to his ancestors. However, the residents pointed guns at him. After that, he hid in a ditch for several hours.

According to Raw Story, Montin's lawsuit for malpractice against Lincoln Regional consists of "$22 million in damages for holding him and forcing him to have unnecessary treatments. He is seeking another $760,000 in lost wages, and $10 million to cover punitive damages." This man clearly committed a crime, but the fact that the staff of the hospital did not conduct their own testing to determine his mental state in almost 20 years is not right either. The jury found Montin not guilty due to temporary insanity. Where does temporary insanity equal 20 years in a mental ward?

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