Ex-inmates of Camden County, N.J., jail were falsely told they would get a payout if they filed a lawsuit over nights spent in overcrowded facility. A federal court has had to bring in workers from other courthouses to help handle the flood of claims.
Seven mentally ill inmates committed suicide or suffered dramatic weight loss in Broward County, Fl., jails. Armor Correctional Health Services acknowledged mishandling four cases, reports the South Florida Sun Sentinel. Company says it does an “unappreciated job.”
Milwaukee County Medical Examiner Brian Peterson says Sheriff David Clarke, who is under consideration for a job in the Donald Trump administration, “verbally pummeled” him for disclosing two deaths in the jail that Clarke oversees.
Thousands of officers working at every jail in England and Wales walked off the job in a 24-hour protest of the “volatile and dangerous state of prisons.” U.K. authorities said the job action was an illegal strike.
When Oklahoma closed its psychiatric hospitals, the state turned patients into inmates. The Oklahoman newspaper found that mentally ill inmates are dying at an alarming rate, arguably because of inadequate care.
It’s not clear why Ivan Haynes of Philadelphia spent 41 days in New Jersey jails on an old marijuana possession charge from Pennsylvania. ACLU says it’s an example of how life-altering a misdemeanor charge can be for those unfamiliar with the criminal justice system.
NYC teen committed suicide after he spent three years in Rikers Island jail for minor charge that ended up being dismissed. Mayor has announced a bail-reform program meant to keep low-risk pretrial defendants like Browder out of jail.
Solitary in prisons has had national attention. It also happens in jails, including Los Angeles’ antiquated Men’s Central Jail, where there are 300 in “restrictive housing.” Sheriff’s officials are trying to reduce the population in solitary.
Numbers of inmates increase, and the public is reluctant to spend much money improving conditions. “These are local issues that require local solutions, but the problem is national in its scope,” says the MacArthur Foundation’s Laurie Garduque.