Inmate James Jarvis, 62, Died After Being Found Unresponsive at Jefferson County Detention Center In Golden
GOLDEN, COLORADO (October 13, 2023) - An inmate identified as James Jarvis has tragically died after being found unresponsive in his cell at Jefferson County Detention Center in Golden.
Jefferson County officials are saying that the incident took place on Saturday. An inmate alerted correctional officers that his cellmate James Jarvis was unresponsive in their cell.
Medical staff entered the cell and began life-saving measures in order to help the inmate. Paramedics were called to the scene in order to take over.
Sadly, James Jarvis could not be revived and he was pronounced dead at the scene. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.
Liability For Jefferson County Inmate Deaths
Far too many inmates die in custody each year. There are many different reasons that an inmate may die during their stay. According to the U.S. Justice Department, “Nearly 9 in 10 of these deaths (89%) were attributed to medical conditions. Fewer than 1 in 10 were the result of suicide (6%) and homicide (2%), while alcohol/drug intoxication and accidental injury accounted for another 1% each. A definitive cause could not be determined for 1% of these deaths.” Several factors can increase the likelihood that an inmate will die in-custody.
- Inmate deaths are much more likely to occur at institutions that lack adequate care policies.
- Inmates are more likely to die at jails that are overcrowded .
- Inmates are more likely to die when jail staff are not properly trained to recognize the signs of a medical emergency.
- Inmates are more likely to die when a jail is understaffed.
Despite whatever challenges a jail may face, they have a legal obligation to do everything within reason to protect inmates from foreseeable sources of harm. This includes harm from violence at the hands of other inmates. It also includes harm that may arise from a lack of proper care. If a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. Not every instance of neglect will rise to the level of a violation of the constitution. What follows are some examples of medical neglect that could result in a death.
- A jail may have failed to help an inmate with known suicidal ideations.
- A jail may have failed to help an inmate in the midst of a drug overdose.
- A jail may have failed to help an inmate in the midst of drug withdrawal.
- A jail may have failed to help an inmate in the midst of a medical emergency due to excessive force by officers.
Every inmate death is unique. However, these deaths often reveal a number of similarities in the way that institutions treat inmates. Jails will often wait until an inmate is already in medical distress before they will bother helping. In many situations, jail officials will fail to perform needed welfare checks on inmates that could have otherwise saved their lives. The family of any person that died in custody may have legal recourse through a constitutional claim.
Investigating Inmate Deaths At Jefferson County Jail
We at Scott H. Palmer, P.C. extend our deepest condolences to the family of James Jarvis. It is our sincere hope that jail officials will do their part and be totally transparent about what happened. Accountability and transparency are greatly needed in this situation.
Have you or someone that you care about been harmed while staying at the Jefferson County Jail? You may have legal recourse. Our team of civil rights advocates are here to assist you in any way that we can. We are committed to helping victims of medical neglect in prison. 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.