Den­ver po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing death at down­town jail

The Denver Post - - NEWS - By Kirk Mitchell and Noelle Phillips

An in­mate in Den­ver’s Down­town De­ten­tion Cen­ter was killed Mon­day morn­ing dur­ing a fight with an­other in­mate, the Den­ver Po­lice De­part­ment said.

No deputies were in­volved in the fight, sources told The Den­ver Post.

The names of in­mates in­volved, cause of death or cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing the al­ter­ca­tion have not been re­leased by the Den­ver Po­lice De­part­ment, which is in­ves­ti­gat­ing the death.

“The in­ci­dent that oc­curred at the Down­town De­ten­tion Cen­ter this morn­ing re­mains un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion, and there are lim­ited de­tails that can be shared at this time,” Sher­iff Pa­trick Fir­man said in an emailed state­ment. “How­ever, we can con­firm that the fa­cil­ity was ap­pro­pri­ately staffed and the hous­ing unit where the in­ci­dent oc­curred was be­low ca­pac­ity. Em­ploy­ees and the in­mates who wit­nessed the in­ci­dent have been of­fered well­ness as­sis­tance, and we will con­tinue to sup­port their well-be­ing.”

The death comes at a time when the Den­ver Sher­iff De­part­ment has been crit­i­cized by its deputies’ union for in­creas­ing vi­o­lence in­side the city’s two jails.

Last year, the sher­iff’s de­part­ment re­ported 513 in­mate-on-in­mate as­saults, six times the num­ber of as­saults re­ported four years ago, ac­cord­ing to a Den­ver Post re­port in April. As­saults on deputies also have been on the rise.

While Fir­man has ac­knowl­edged the in­creas­ing vi­o­lence, he has said a rea­son for in­creas­ing vi­o­lence is un­known. Some ob­servers at­tribute the vi­o­lence to crowded jails, more in­mates with men­tal ill­nesses and to deputies who have be­come more vig­i­lant in fill­ing out re­ports.

Be­tween 2011 and 2015, 20 peo­ple died in Den­ver’s jails, a Den­ver Post in­ves­ti­ga­tion found this year. That was the high­est num­ber of deaths among the state’s 56 county jail sys­tems; Den­ver’s is the largest jail in the state.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.