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Woman Commits Suicide in Kirby, Texas Jail – Texas Rangers Investigate

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3d interior Jail

The Kirby Police Department, in Kirby, Texas, filed a custodial death report with Attorney General of Texas Ken Paxton. The report was regarding the death of Amanda Lynn Watkins. Ms. Watkins was only 36 years old at the time of her death. We make no allegation of any wrongdoing against anyone related to Ms. Watkins’ death but instead are simply providing information obtained from that custodial death report.  Texas police departments and county jails are required to file custodial death reports when a person dies in custody.

Ms. Watkins was placed in custody after an alleged domestic dispute. She was treated on-scene by EMS for an injury she received during that dispute. She was then transported to a hospital by EMS. She was taken into custody by an officer and transported to the Kirby Police Department.

It has been our experience, as a Texas civil rights law firm handling jail death cases, that some cities in Texas will have what they refer to as a “holding facility.” A holding facility looks like a small jail, and it is not designed to keep prisoners for a lengthy period of time. Generally,  cities are not equipped to incarcerate inmates for a lengthy period of time. Most cities do not have trained or certified jailers. We make no allegations in this post as to whether the Kirby Police Department does or does not have certified jailers, and/or was able to handle Ms. Watkins’ situation.

Ms. Watkins was placed into a holding cell at the Kirby jail while police officers completed paperwork before transporting her to a magistrate’s office. A female police officer conducted a prisoner check and found Ms. Watkins to be unresponsive. Ms. Watkins had committed suicide using her pants, which she had tied around her neck. EMS ultimately arrived and attempted to resuscitate Ms. Watkins. Unfortunately, they were not successful. Ms. Watkins was declared deceased at 11:54 a.m.

The Texas Rangers and Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office were called to the scene to conduct an investigation. It is common, when a custodial death occurs in a smaller city or county in Texas, for the Texas Rangers to conduct an investigation. Texas Rangers do not attempt to determine during such an investigation whether there is civil liability for a custodial death. Instead, Texas Rangers are concerned about any potential criminal conduct leading to the death under investigation.

Written By: author image Dean Malone
author image Dean Malone
Dean Malone is the founder of Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C., a jail neglect civil rights law firm. Mr. Malone earned his bachelor's degree at the University of Texas at Dallas, graduating summa cum laude with a 4.0 GPA, and from Baylor University School of Law with a general civil litigation concentration. Mr. Malone served in several staff positions for the Baylor Law Review, including executive editor. Mr. Malone is an experienced trial lawyer, trying a number of cases to jury verdict and also handling arbitrations through final hearing. He heads the jail neglect section of his law firm, in which lawyers litigate cases involving serious injury and death resulting from jail neglect and abuse. Lawyers frequently refer cases to Mr. Malone due to his focus on this very complicated civil rights practice area.