Two inmates at Clark County Jail committed suicide earlier this month, which brings the total number of deaths at the jail this year to four. The deaths draw attention to what the jail has already identified as a worsening problem. There have been twice as many suicide attempts in 2011 as there were in 2007. Eighteen suicide attempts resulted in one death.
Shortly after the deaths this month, details were released about an inmate’s death in February. The report found that Marius Asanachescu’s death was a homicide by asphyxiation. He died while he was being restrained by prison officers.
The spate of deaths in the Clark County Jail has officials searching for explanations and ways to prevent further problems. An investigation by the County auditor points out the jail has been “heavily impacted by special-needs inmates.”
What can be done to prevent suicides in correctional facilities?
- Stephanie Rice: Clark County government reporter at The Columbian
- Christine Tartaro: Professor of Criminal Justice at Stockton College in New Jersey and co-author of Suicide and Self-Harm in Prisons and Jails