The state of North Carolina has regulations set for both jails and detention centers housing inmates that require officers to monitor and supervise these individuals for certain period of time. On that same note, they also cannot leave them unattended for an extended period of time. But, if you have ever been to one of these jails or you know someone who has, it is clear that these facilities violate the laws and regulations on a regular basis. And what happens when they fail to abide by these policies? Inmates go untreated for serious medical conditions they are suffering from or worse, wind up dead.
The truth is, many of the individuals who are placed in the Detention Center in Columbus County or any other jail in the state of North Carolina aren’t hard-core criminals and some are awaiting trial to even find out if they have been convicted for the crime they allegedly committed. What that means is that many of the people are first time offenders who are simply trying to cope with being locked away, with no food, no family, and a significant number of harmful strangers that pose as a potential threat. It’s hard for many people thrown inside these unkept environments to survive and some require immediate medical care to help cope with the initial shock they experience.
Sadly, a significant number of inmates are ignored and turned away when they seek help from an officer or medical personnel.
Aside from the fact that “at any given time, up 24,000 inmates are held in North Carolina’s 113 jails,” many of the officers working inside these facilities simply don’t care about the condition of an inmate. According to The News & Observer, “a lack of supervision was blamed for one out of every three of the 151 deaths in county jails” between 2012-2016.
With facilities being overcrowded and a lack of supervision, many individuals who may have had another chance at life once they were released, died. Take Patrick O’Malley who died of a heart attack in 2015 after being left in a restraining chair for over nine hours. While most would consider this a form of police brutality, it may even be a case of torture. Another inmate, Amy Blankership, was left unobserved for 51 minutes in her cell before she was found hanging. Apparently, the video camera used to observe the inmate wasn’t running at that time. Coincidence or conspiracy?
Lack of Supervision is Only One Reason Why Inmates Die While Being Detained in a Jail or Detention Center
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, between 2007 and 2010, it was documented that many inmates died because of an illness. Some of the recorded illnesses include:
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
- Respiratory disease
- Other illness
Whether it was something they contracted or already had, that isn’t clear. However, one thing that can be determined is that if officers are leaving inmates to hang themselves, not finding them for over an hour later, then those who truly need medical care aren’t being provided with it and are left with no choice but serve out their sentence in pain and suffering. And inmates today are still dying from their poorly treated illnesses.
What can you do if a loved one of yours is an inmate in a detention center in Columbus County, NC and they either suffered an injury or died?
The best thing you can do is consult with a North Carolina police brutality attorney. Seeing that you are going up against the law, you need someone familiar with all laws and regulations that can help support you and the inmate you are representing as these cases are known to be complex. USAttorneys.com will gladly find you a local NC police misconduct or wrongful death lawyer now so you can be on your way to seeking justice.