Fourth Inmate Suicide At Hudson County Jail Leaves Community Outraged
KEARNY, NEW JERSEY (March 25, 2018) – A suicidal man was arrested in West New York after he told police officers that he wanted to jump off a bridge.
Less than 48 hours later the man was found dead hanging inside of his cell at the Hudson County Jail in Kearny.
There have been six inmate deaths at the Hudson County Jail in the past year and four of those deaths have been ruled suicides.
County officials have indicated that their contract with an outside medical provider may soon be terminated.
The victim in this incident told officers that he had mental health issues. There were reports that the victim told officials back in May that he was suicidal.
However, jail officials appear to not have reviewed those documents and the man was placed inside of the general population area with other inmates instead of the mental health unit.
An investigation into the inmates death remains ongoing at this time.
LIABILITY IN INMATE DEATHS DUE TO SUICIDE
Jails have a responsibility to provide a reasonably safe environment for inmates as well as staff. This includes taking certain precautions against the possibility of inmate suicide. No jail can perfectly predict when or how any inmate may commit suicide. However, courts have generally found that jails cannot show deliberate indifference towards the possibility of inmate suicide. In particular, jails should take extra measures to protect inmates that are known to have suicidal thoughts. If a jail leaves an inmate in a cell with objects that could be used to hang them-self, this may amount to deliberate indifference and expose the jail to civil liability. The family members of the victim may be able to file a claim for damages.
Our staff at Lipsig Lawyers were deeply saddened to learn about the tragic death of yet another inmate at the Hudson County Jail. There needs to be serious action taken against this jail before more inmates die. What has happened here is utterly unacceptable and needs to be addressed. What this man needed was proper medical care and treatment. What he received was incarceration and deliberate indifference. Every inmate has a right to due process and equal treatment under the law. We sincerely hope that measures are put in place to help protect the safety of inmates at this jail.
If you’ve lost someone that you love due to suicide at a county jail you may have legal recourse. Our team of personal injury attorneys are here to help in any way that we can. Whether you just have questions about your rights or are looking to hire an attorney you’re always welcome to reach out to us if you need help (646) 846-4496.