Man acquitted in baby's murder gets almost $900K settlement from MCSO

Posted: Updated:

PHOENIX - A Valley man acquitted of murdering his baby son has now won a second victory in court.

A jury just awarded him nearly $900,000. Delano Yanes says the night he was booked into the Madison Street Jail on murder charges, two detention officers assaulted and beat him. Now, seven years later, a jury ruled in his favor.

Yanes’ lawyer Joel Robbins says, “They think they can take the law into their own hands. I’m happy with the judgment.”

The judgment of $885,000 was awarded after a jury found two Maricopa County sheriff's detention officers liable for abusing Yanes. He was imprisoned in September 2003 but in 2006 Yanes was acquitted on all charges.

He then filed his a lawsuit against the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office and detention officers John Noble and Santos Hernandez because of what happened his first night behind bars.

Yanes says the officers told him to go into a bathroom to get a roll of toilet paper. He explains, “I turned around and there was a black glove coming toward my face. From there, I don’t remember hardly anything. All I remember is waking up in a pool of blood.”

Originally, MCSO accused Yanes of assaulting the officers but those charges were dropped.

Robbins says, “They don’t care what the truth is. What sounds best on the news is what they'll say.”

With the judgment money in his pocket, Yanes says he plans to eventually start a business and he maintains his innocence in the death of his son. “There’s no amount of money, no amount of anything that can take that pain away. It’s going to be there for the rest of my life.”

A spokesperson for MCSO tells 3TV the department will appeal the decision. In the meantime, Morris says the two detention officers involved remain employed with the sheriff's department although MCSO could not confirm that.