Jail Inmate’s Suicide: Who Is Responsible?

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An inmate admitted to California’s Yolo County Jail told intake officers that he had tried to commit suicide two weeks earlier. But less than two weeks after going behind bars, he was found dead by hanging. The family believes that his death could have been prevented and that it resulted from the negligence and incompetence of the jail staff and a private firm that provides medical care.

The Sacramento News and Review examines a lawsuit filed by the family contending that the jail and its contractor have ignored the same kinds of problems over an extended period of time. The defendants say the man ultimately was responsible for his own death. The story illustrates the difficulties of dealing with potentially suicidal inmates.

Link: http://www.newsreview.com/issues/sacto/2003-06-26/cover.asp

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