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Sixth Inmate Dead In Six Weeks At Atlanta's Fulton County Jail

Another inmate at Atlanta's Fulton County Jail is dead, marking the sixth inmate death in six weeks, and the tenth this year at the facility where former President Trump was booked last month, Scripps News reports. Inmate Shawndre Delmore, 24, was found unresponsive by detention officers during a routine check on Aug. 31. Despite lifesaving measures from jail and later hospital staff, he remained in an unresponsive state and died Sept. 3. Delmore's family members said they do not understand how he could have walked into the jail in April a healthy young man then died unexpectedly months later. "My son did not deserve to die like this. He had his whole life ahead of him. I wasn't expecting to see my son in the condition he was in," said his mother, Natasha Holoman. Delmore's death closely resembles the story of most of the other six inmates who died in the jail's custody. From July 31 to Aug. 26, four inmates were also found unresponsive in their cells and were later pronounced deceased. The fourth, Samuel Lawrence, 34, had filed a civil rights complaint against the jail alleging excessive force from deputies and other inmates that led to injuries.

These six deaths, along with another four earlier this year, have pushed the Fulton County jail system further into the line of sight of the U.S. Department of Justice, which launched a civil investigation into the facility's alleged unsanitary conditions and severe violence in July. The investigation stemmed from 35-year-old inmate LaShawn Thompson's death in September 2022 after his family claimed he had been eaten alive by bedbugs and insects while living in the jail. A private autopsy found that Thompson had died from "severe neglect." Fulton County Sheriff Pat Labat said these violent and deadly incidents at the jail are "of grave concern but unfortunately [are] not surprising" due to the facility's dangerous overcrowding and its "crumbling walls." District Attorney Fani Willis said the jail can't handle all that it has on its plate. "Atlanta and Fulton County has become too big. [The jail] was antiquated the day they built it," Willis said. "People deserve to be housed humanely, even when they've been accused of crimes. We need a bigger facility, and it needs to be a facility that treats people humanely." In the case involving former President Trump and 18 co-defendants, all were booked at the jail last month, but only one was actually held. He was released days later.


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