Guards Ordered At Indiana Jail; Beaten Inmate Dies

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An Indianapolis jail inmate died of injuries suffered in an attack by another prisoner, underscoring the dangers in the state’s most crowded jail system, the Indianapolis Star says.

Kenneth Carpenter, 44, was beaten, kicked and choked July 1. He was pronounced dead Monday, shortly before a federal judge and the Marion County Sheriff toured the facility. The judge, Sarah Evans Barker, yesterday told county leaders to find money for more guards by Monday and use extra space in the Marion County Lockup for holding jail inmates.

Eleven officers were on duty at the time of the attack, guarding 1,331 inmates. “That’s just not fair,” Carpenter’s sister Vicki Smith said. “He was defenseless, and they should have been there to protect him.” The assaul was caught on videotape and included a celebratory dance over the victim by his apparent attacker. Guards saw the attack unfolding on a video screen but could not reach the cell in time. They had to go down a 25-foot hallway and open a locked door to reach the two men.

Calling the conditions at the jail horrific and brutal, Barker said the tour opened her eyes to the depths of the problem.


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