NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Who is Randy Cox? News 8 sat down with his family on Tuesday after they announced a major lawsuit against the City of New Haven.

His family calls him an active 36-year-old with a girlfriend and two kids. His mother and sister talked about his difficult physical and emotional journey ahead.

“He’s nice. He’s what you would call a friend,” said Doreen Coleman, Cox’s mother.

Cox’s mother and his sister, LaToya Boomer, say Cox hadn’t worked since COVID. He spent a lot of his time on Lilac Street where he was arrested on a gun charge at a block party celebrating Juneteenth and Father’s Day. His family claims the police didn’t tell them he was hurt during the arrest.    

“My mother called the jail and they said, ‘oh, he’s here, he’s not processed,’” Boomer said. “So, she’s waiting and waiting, and then the surgeon, the spine surgeon called her and says, ‘do I have permission to do emergency surgery right now?’ And she’s like, ‘huh? What? On who? What are you talking about?’”

Cox’s family says they are still hoping he will recover all or some of the use of his limbs, but in the meantime, they say the mental challenges are big.

“Mentally, he tries to be there, you know,” Boomer said. “[He] tries to make jokes, but being stuck in a bed having to ask somebody, ‘can you check me because I think I might have used the bathroom,’ but he doesn’t know.”

The family’s lawyer, Attorney Ben Crump, says this case is phase two of the Freddie Gray case in Baltimore. Gray was killed in a police transport van in 2015. They say this is why this case in New Haven is important nationwide.

“If we don’t get it right in New Haven, there’s no telling what is going to happen in other cities around the country,” Crump said. “So, we have to get the right policy in New Haven that will hopefully serve as a precedent for the rest of the United States of America.”

Cox is still in the hospital. His family says they aren’t sure how they are going to handle the situation when he gets out because they don’t have a car to get him to doctor appointments.

The family has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Cox against the City of New Haven and five New Haven police officers for $100 million.