Inmate OscarFlores, 47,Died After Medical Emergency At Jones County Jail
JONES COUNTY, TEXAS (November 5, 2023) - An inmate identified as Oscar Flores has tragically died following a medical emergency while in-custody at a Jones County jail.
Jones County officials are saying that the incident took place on October 22. Correctional officers noticed that Oscar Flores was in medical distress.
Jail medical staff began life-saving measures in order to help the inmate. Despite those efforts, Oscar Flores was later pronounced dead.
His medical cause of death was listed as cardiac arrest. A full investigation into the death remains ongoing at this time.
Liability For Jones County Inmate Deaths
Thousands of inmates die in custody each year. A large portion of these deaths are related to cardiac illnesses. According to the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, “Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a leading cause of death among the 2.2 million individuals incarcerated in correctional facilities. Those recently released from correctional facilities have a higher risk of being hospitalized and dying of CVD compared with the general population, even after accounting for differences in racial identity and socioeconomic status.” There are a number of steps that jails should take in order to protect inmates from cardiac related medical emergencies.
- Medical Screenings: Inmate should receive a thorough medical screening when they are first admitted. In particular, jails should determine which inmates have pre-existing medical conditions.
- Health Checkups: Inmates should get regular health checkups to determine if their health conditions are deteriorating.
- Staff Training: Correctional officers should be trained to identify when an inmate may need more extensive care.
All jails have a legal obligation to provide inmates with reasonable healthcare. This includes care for pre-existing medical conditions. Failing to provide inmates with adequate care and health checkups can prove to be fatal - especially for inmates with cardiac illnesses. When 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 results of any autopsy that is performed should be known.
- The care that an inmate received prior to their death should be understood.
- The inmate’s health profile and medical records should be preserved.
It can be hard to know where to begin after any inmate dies in custody. To make matters worse, it is rare for jails to be transparent about how any person dies in custody. Indeed, many jails will list in-custody deaths as “natural.” But this can disguise the fact that many supposedly “natural” in-custody deaths involve some amount of medical neglect. The family of any inmate that died in-custody may have legal recourse through a constitutional claim.
Investigating Jones County Inmate Deaths
We at Scott H. Palmer, P.C. extend our deepest condolences to the family of Oscar Flores. There needs to be a thorough investigation into what happened for the sake of this man’s family. There are so many questions that still need to be answered. It is our sincere hope that steps are taken to prevent other tragedies like this.
Do you need more information about a Jones County inmate death? Our team of civil rights advocates are here to assist you in any way that we can. We care deeply that inmates are aware of their rights and that jails are upholding constitutional standards. 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.