A Massachuseetts state prison inmate was found hanged in his cell yesterday, raising concerns about the mental well-being of prisoners in the state, reports the Boston Globe. Ramon DeJesus, 58, was serving a second-degree murder sentence at the medium-security facility for a 1992 homicide. It May have been the sixth time an inmate has taken his own life at a Department of Correction facility this year. The death of an inmate in May is still being investigated, as is that of DeJesus.
Said Leslie Walker of Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services: “I am fearful for our other clients suffering from depression and major mental illness who are not kept safe by the people charged with keeping them safe,'' she said. Five Massachusetts inmates took their own lives last year. There have been four confirmed suicides this year. Massachusetts now has an inmate suicide rate that is about three times the national average.