PRINCIPAL OFFICE: DALLAS, TEXAS: (214) 670-9989 | TOLL FREE: (866) 670-9989

Lawyer for Jail Suicide Texas – A State’s Custodial Deaths in the Past 5 Years are Being Investigated as they have been Linked to Failures in Jail Oversight – Part 3

iStock 123166440

Another family that is fighting to expose what happened to their loved one who committed suicide in jail talks about the records reflecting his repeated expressions of suicidal thoughts. The focus of the problem is that after the man hung himself, the follow-up investigation said that no violations were committed by the jail. The family fought and received access to additional records surrounding the custodial death. Those records imply that the suicidal inmate encountered total deliberate indifference with regard to his vulnerable situation.

Although the inmate was on the 15-minute watch for suicidal prisoners, the way checks were made is considered evidence of inadequate supervision. Records reflect that jail staff checked on him from a catwalk on one end of his cell. They were looking through a small window that provided an obstructed view. The window they looked through was so small, there was no way to see the entirety of the cell.

These required in-person well-being checks have been categorized as inadequate to the point they were like no checks at all. This finding is used to indicate how deeply the jail needs greater accountability. Even though there was a jail inspection to investigate procedures after the custodial suicide occurred, no problems were identified and no problems were corrected.

See Part 1 and Part 2 of this ongoing series.

Jails have a duty to uphold inmates’ constitutional rights. If any custom, policy, or practice within a jail causes a custodial death and is determined to be unconstitutional, a jail can be sued.

This post is meant as an informational resource, and there is no intention for this or any other post on this website to suggest or imply misconduct or wrongdoing on the part of any individual or governmental institution.

–Guest Contributor

Written By: author image smchugh
author image smchugh