A 17-year-old’s suicide at a Connecticut state prison is causing a furor among child and mental health advocates who have been fighting to get troubled youths out of the state’s adult prison system, the Hartford Courant reports. “This is a terrible tragedy and our office has begun an investigation,” state Child Advocate Jeanne Milstein said. Milstein’s comments came the day after David Burgos hanged himself with a bed sheet at the Manson Youth Institution, the state’s high-security prison for men aged 14 to 21.
Burgos had a history of mental illness and struggled with bipolar disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. He was sent to prison in March for violating his probation after allegedly being caught stealing. “This individual was not convicted of a crime,” said James McGaughey of the Office of Protection and Advocacy. “How does a kid this age wind up there, particularly someone with a history of mental illness?”