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Rush County Inmate Dies After Apparent Medical Episode

Steve Wagner

Synopsis

  • As we closed 2017, we heard of yet another death in an Indiana County Jail.
  • It has been reported by state police that a 30-year-old inmate appeared to have a medical episode and was then transported to Rush Memorial Hospital where he later died.
  • According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, in the past decade, over 10,000 inmates have lost their lives in both city and county jails.
  • And, reports from the Indiana Department of Corrections say that the average number of deaths in our county jails each year is between eight and twelve.
  • We would argue that many of those deaths could have been prevented with proper care and supervision, and correctional facilities have a duty to their inmates to ensure the safety of those in their charge.
  • When a jail or prison death does occur, family and loved ones are left to suffer and deserve a full investigation to identify those guilty of wrongdoing or negligence.
  • Filing a civil rights violation or wrongful death case at most times cannot be done without legal representation.

Rush County Jail Death Under Investigation

Indiana State Police and the Rush County Sheriff’s Department say they are investigating the death of a jail inmate in central Indiana. The 30-year old man was arrested on a warrant after a Franklin County traffic stop and taken to jail. It has been reported by state police that the man appeared to have a medical episode and was transported to Rush Memorial Hospital where he later died. An autopsy was completed on Friday but the results have not been released. As the inmate’s death remains under investigation by Indiana State Police, we will continue to follow the story.

Inmates Often Receive Inadequate Health Care

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, in the past decade, over 10,000 inmates have lost their lives in both city and county jails. Individuals being held at jails may be experiencing punishment for a wrongdoing, but they still have the right to be cared for in appropriate ways, including being provided access to appropriate and timely medical attention for illness, injury, or physical or mental state. Correctional facilities have a duty to their inmates to ensure the safety of those in their charge and may be guilty of wrongdoing or negligence in many jail or prison death cases.

Whether this inmate’s death was the result of a tragic accident, sickness, natural causes – or in some extreme cases inadequate or insufficient health care, abuse or mistreatment – family and loved ones are left to suffer in his absence and deserve a full investigation to seek out answers and demand that the responsible parties are held accountable.

How Can an Attorney Help?

An experienced attorney will understand that prisoners can be very vulnerable and that inmates have a constitutional right to receive appropriate medical care. In Indiana, there is a statutory cap of $700,000 on damages for negligence cases against government agencies or actors. However, many jail and prison death cases involve violations of federal civil rights under 42 U.S.C. §1983. There is no cap on damages in federal civil rights cases, and attorney fees can be recovered. Wagner Reese attorneys understand the complexities of federal civil rights litigation and know how to plead a case so your claim is not limited by the state tort claims cap.

Wrongful Death Cases

If your loved one has suffered injury or death in an Indiana jail or prison, the wrongful death attorneys at Wagner Reese can assist you in recovering financial damages for the losses you have sustained. Contact us now at 1-888-710-9377 to schedule an appointment in our Indianapolis or Carmel offices, or use our convenient, confidential contact form.

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