Thursday, March 22, 2018

Follies Of First Responders: Inmate Dead In Cell For 3 days; Sheriff’s Staff Blamed Smell On Sewers


Inmate dead in cell for 2 or 3 days; staff blamed smell on sewer 

An inmate at the state prison in Otay Mesa was dead for days last April before prison staffers realized it, according to a recently released autopsy report. Staffers blamed the smell on the sewer system. And during that time, the man’s cellmate discouraged people from checking on the already dead inmate, who was under a blanket on his bunk at Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility. And the cellmate, it turns out, was serving time for homicide related to the death of his own father, whose decomposed body was found under a mattress in his home. The Medical Examiner’s Office, which released the report earlier this month, ruled James Acuna’s cause and manner of death as “undetermined,” noting that it was possible the 58-year-old inmate on his third prison term died of natural causes.Last year, Sheriff’s Department officials said Acuna had been dead two to three days before he was found. The investigative narrative and autopsy report — in which information gleaned from medical records is redacted — provides a glimpse into the death of Acuna, who was found in his cell in the late morning of April 24, 2017, his blanket pulled over his head. The report states that, at one point, the smell from Acuna’s two-man, second-floor cell brought complaints from other inmates and prompted staffers to put in a work order, suspecting there was a sewer problem. Source 

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