Inmate GaryParker, 66, Died Following Medical Emergency at Galveston Jail
GALVESTON COUNTY, TEXAS (November 26, 2023) - An inmate identified as Gary Parker has tragically died in-custody after a medical emergency at a Galveston jail.
Galveston County officials are saying that the incident began on September 12. Gary Parker was transported to the hospital in order to receive care for a medical.
He remained at the hospital for around 5 weeks. However, his condition declined while he was at the hospital.
Sadly, Gary Parker was pronounce dead by medical staff on October 21. His medical cause of death was listed as “cardiopulmonary arrest.”
A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.
Liability For Galveston Inmate Deaths
Heart attacks are a major cause of in-custody death. According to Prison Legal News, “Combined U.S. prisoner deaths were 3,170 in 2001 and rose to 4,513, the highest number recorded, in 2018. Cancer (1,137) and heart disease (1,052) were the leading causes of prisoners’ deaths in 2018. Both numbers had been fairly steady since 2013. By contrast, the number of deaths attributed to drug/alcohol intoxication and suicide rose dramatically in recent years.” There are a number of signs that an inmate may be having a heart attack.
- People going through a heart attack may experience chest pain that lasts a few minutes.
- People going through a heart attack may experience shortness of breath or have difficulty breathing.
- People going through a heart attack may experience nausea or vomiting.
- People going through a heart attack may experience sudden and extreme fatigue.
Jails have a legal obligation to provide inmates with medical care for all of their health conditions. Accordingly, jails need to give every inmate a thorough medical screening. When an inmate has been identified as having a serious medical condition like a heart illness, they will typically need specialized care. If a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. It is important that evidence is properly preserved after any inmate death.
- The medical records of the inmate that died should be sought.
- Eye witnesses should be interviewed.
- Surveillance footage should be sought.
- The actions of jail officers leading up to the death should be known.
- Any medical requests that the inmate made prior to dying should be known.
It is common for inmates to request medical care for their conditions only to be denied. In many situations, correctional officers will claim that inmates aren’t really sick or don’t need additional care. There are many instances where people have died in custody because jail officials claimed that an inmate was “faking” their illness. this is completely unacceptable. The family of any person that died in custody may have legal recourse through a civil claim.
Investigating Galveston Inmate Deaths
We at Scott H. Palmer, P.C. extend our deepest condolences to the family of Gary Parker. There have been so many deaths across Galveston County in recent months. It is our sincere hope that measures are taken to prevent other tragedies like this. Every life is precious and jails should be doing everything that they can to protect those that they are caring for.
Do you need more information about a Galveston County jail death? Our team of civil rights attorneys may be able to assist you in any way that we can. We care deeply that inmates are aware of their rights and that they get the support that they are entitled to under the law. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any incident we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at 214-987-4100.