Parents sue San Jose State after suicide


A lawsuit filed last week by the parents of an 18-year-old San Jose State University student who killed himself at an on-campus dorm last year claims the college did not take proper measures in caring for the man.

Beverly Hills-based attorney Carl Douglas filed the lawsuit in Santa Clara County Superior Court on behalf of Gary and Denise Carol Tiggs, the parents of Brenden Tiggs.

The lawsuit alleges that the university’s residential life staff and campus police did not “properly treat and care for someone who was then displaying a clear medical disability and in need of immediate medical attention.” Around 1 a.m. on Feb. 9, 2014, Brenden Tiggs, a freshman student at SJSU, had entered the second-floor lobby of Joe West Hall where resident assistants saw him intoxicated and his clothes disheveled, according to the claim.

The assistants escorted Brenden Tiggs to the dorm of another student and called campus police, the claim states.

The lawsuit alleges that the residential life staff and campus police did not take Brenden Tiggs to the university’s health care provider and left him at his friend’s dorm.

The college’s residential life staff and campus police allegedly did not follow up with Brenden Tiggs to check on his condition later that morning or afternoon, according to the lawsuit.

Sometime that day, university police found Brenden Tiggs, who had hung himself with a belt from his bunk bed in his dorm room, according to the suit.

The lawsuit does not list monetary damages that Gary and Denise Carol Tiggs are seeking.

In July 2014, a lawsuit filed by Douglas for Gary and Denise Carol Tiggs in July 2014 that sought $11 million in damages was rejected by SJSU, according to the claim filed last week.

In a statement issued today, SJSU President Mohammad Qayoumi said:

“San José State remains deeply saddened by the loss of Brenden Tiggs. … While SJSU is unable to comment on the details of a lawsuit filed by his family, I would like to reassure you that SJSU cares about and is firmly committed to providing a safe environment for everyone in the campus community.”


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