An internal review of North Carolina’s Central Prison found that inmates with serious mental illnesses were neglected by staff and locked away in fetid cells, the Associated Press reports. Neglect, which included failure to track anti-psychotic medications properly, may have contributed to an inmate death, says a report AP obtained via a public records request.
Among other findings: Inmates were left isolated for weeks of “therapeutic seclusion,” sometimes without clothing or a mattress, in roach-infested cells with human waste on the floor. Others were strapped to bunks in an improper manner that allowed them to bang their heads against concrete walls. Chronic understaffing led to situations where the sick went untreated and suicidal inmates sometimes went unmonitored. Jennie Lancaster, chief operating officer for the corrrections department, said it is working to improve conditions, provide remedial staff training, and fill vacant positions.