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El Paso County

Robert is going to a hospital after months in jail!

Jan 9th, 2021

Languishing in the Smith County jail since April 2019, isolated in a single cell and untreated, Robert Paquin was beaten up—not uncommon for people experiencing mental illness in a local jail. His aunt asked Dalila for help, reporting that Robert had stopped eating, and worst of all, was being pressured to plead to a felony that would put him in prison for three years. Because of the work of TJP advocate Dalila Reynoso and her fundraising to hire a “low bono” attorney Brett Harrison, and because of coordinated efforts of TJP’s director Krish Gundu and the Texas Indigent Defense Commission, Robert was further evaluated by a forensic psychiatrist who declared him to be insane during the incident—and charges were dismissed. Robert will be moved to a long-term medical facility. His aunt told Dalila, “Y’all saved his life! You really did!””

El Paso: Save $$, reduce number of inmates

Apr 29th, 2015

“We spend a tremendous amount of money on our jails, and it’s not because we are keeping violent criminals in jail, it’s because for years we have been inefficient in the way we process these individuals,” says El Paso county commissioner Vince Perez. Nearly 3/4 of the 1600 inmates in the El Paso County jail are awaiting their first appearance in court, which can take up to 45 days! Imagine how much money that wastes while wrecking families and the livelihoods of those being held pretrial. Perez says that El Paso wants to change that. In this excellent story in the El Paso Times, it becomes obvious that the bail bondsmen are the only ones who find this new plan controversial.

El Paso Findings on the Death of Sgt. Brown

Jul 27th, 2012

Texas Jail Project would like to know what has happened since the medical examiner said the death of Sgt. James Brown last September was due to “natural causes.” There are so many unanswered questions! We would like to hear from Sgt. Brown’s family, and hope they will email us at help@texasjailproject.org.
Sgt. James Brown died after being forceably injected in his El Paso jail cell. The tragic death of this 26-year old man deserves a much more in depth investigation and more testing, and questions need to be asked, like. . . . who made the decision to inject Sgt. Brown with a sedative?

Mother of Sgt. Brown Asks Why He Died in the Jail

Jul 26th, 2012

Sgt. James Brown, 26, of Fort Bliss, voluntarily checked into the El Paso County jail on July 13 to serve a three day sentence for a DUI and died while in jail custody July 14 after being given an injection apparently intended to sedate him. His family said Brown was not a combative individual.
His mother, Dinetta Scott, was quoted in the Imperial Valley Press this week, saying, ““I just believe they killed my son,” said Scott. “I don’t know how, I don’t know why, but they killed my son.”
The Texas Jail Project awaits results of the investigation into this tragic death.

El Paso Man Prepares for Death in Jail, Says Family

Nov 3rd, 2011

The Gomez family joined demonstrators at Occupy E Paso because they said that their father, a a U.S. citizen, is not receiving necessary treatment for his kidney condition and has lost some 100 pounds while in the Otero County Jail. According to he U.S. Marshals, Samuel Gomez is getting all the care he needs. Texas Jail Project asks the Gomez family to email help@texasjailproject.org . . . . .

El Paso Jail Works to Divert Mentally Ill People

Aug 1st, 2010

Four out of ten inmates in the El Paso County jails have some sort of a mental health issue, according to the county. Jesus Guiroga handles all of the intake and crisis services at El Paso Mental Health And Mental Retardation. He’s seen the mental health problem in the jails on a daily basis, but he said much of it can be prevented.