San Antonio Current writer Michael Barajas is leaving the paper and pursuing other goals, and we will miss his throrough coverage of issues related to inmates in the jails of San Antonio. This last story reveals so much about the inner workings of an understaffed and dysfunctional jail that it reads like a book, but Barajas also does a smpathetic and intelligent analysis of a young man’s life and tragic death. We can hope that Tommy Taylor’s seven hours in the jail will lead to a better jail, but we also have to hope the Current finds a reporter/writer who can cover stories with the passion Barajas brought to these cases.
Posts Tagged ‘ withdrawal ’
a. Consider changing everything. People being held in your jail for whatever reason should not be subjected to a death sentence because of your policies, practices, and your jail doctor. No matter if you disagree with what meds inmates had been taking or how they took them, people incarcerated there have a constitutional right to
Another Longview mother saw her son die because of Gregg County’s policies last week.
“I told them he needed his medication,” said Betty Madewell, referring to 51-year-old Bobby Madewell. “His doctor had prescribed him Xanax, and I told them he needed his Xanax or he would start having seizures.”
(Click on CONTINUE READING to see the excellent story from the Longview News-Journal, a local paper holding county officials accountable. They asked challenging questions, provided the background of similar deaths there, and published the list of terrible symptoms accompanying Xanax withdrawal.)
It’s about time. We the people and Amy Lynn Cowling’s family will see her tragic death scrutinized in a court of law.
The wrongful-death lawsuit against Gregg County Jail is set for trial in January, two years after 33-year-old Amy Lynn was jailed for a traffic ticket on Christmas eve and not given necessary medication or assistance during the next four days, until she died December 29th, 2010. Once more, we offer our sympathies to the family. Her mother Vicki Bankhead and the father of her three minor children filed the suit. Families suffer when they have to go through a lawsuit on top of losing their loved one, but they achieve so much in terms of raising awareness and changing our jails. A round of applause for Vicki and for Amy’s aunt Lisa and all the others who have never stopped speaking out about Amy Lynn! We await the trial–and hope for justice.
IN HONOR OF MOTHER’S DAY, HERE IS A TRIBUTE BY LACEY, DAUGHTER OF AMY LYNN:
Tomorrow will be the second Mother’s Day spent without my beautiful Mama. There hasn’t been a day yet that I didn’t think about her and the wonderful memories she left behind. She was a beautiful person with a good heart and the best of intentions. If I knew then what I know now, I would’ve thanked her for the life she blessed me with as well as the unconditional love she had for me, my brother, and my sister. We miss you so much, Mom… I know if you were alive now, you’d be proud. With the love and support of each other… we’ve grown up alot. I just wish you were here to see…. I love you, and I know in my heart… I’ll see your beautiful face again oneday. ♥
On January 4, Ricardo Guzman got a haircut. The 43-year-old San Antonio resident wanted to look good when he turned himself in at court the next day for outstanding drug-possession charges. Guzman had no way of knowing that trusting himself to Bexar County could play a part in his death three days later.
“How is it that a 15 year old….who the country labels worthless to the economy – how is it that this child who has no hope of getting a job or affording college – can suddenly generate 20 to 30 thousand dollars a year once trapped in the criminal justice system? The expansion of prisons,
An otherwise excellent story from the Texas Tribune startled us with the headline: “Another Methadone Addict Dead in Longivew”.
Must we highlight the young man’s addiction, reducing his life to the tragic fact of an addiction—something that thousands if not millions of us deal with?
A preliminary report reveals shocking treatment of Amy; Robyn Claridy’s excellent story begins with these 2 chilling paragraphs: A Gregg County inmate found unresponsive in a jail separation cell was discovered kneeling in a praying position beside her bed before being removed and declared dead a short time later. Amy Lynn Cowling, 33, of Gilmer
In the early evening of March 31, 2009, San Antonio author, one-time Green Party candidate, and animal lover Harlan McVea opened a packet of mustard and began to write his suicide note. He was beginning a familiar descent into the hellish chills, cramping, and nausea of drug withdrawal. Though he preferred methadone, which he bought from friends in various drug-treatment programs, the 31-year-old McVea had been unable to score the previous week.