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Paraplegic Miami inmate with COVID-19 could’ve been freed 4 years ago if not for $650,000 bond


Waiting for word with bated breath. Just got off phone with co-counsel who is also waiting to hear back. She said it’s a good sign it is taking so long. Been 40 minutes. “Usually a 30 second denial.” Scott Hechinger (@ScottHech) May 21, 2020

He included the petition in his message. Anthony believed that if he wasn’t released immediately, he would catch the virus at the jail. He was correct, petitioners said. On Mother’s Day, he could not breathe. He was taken to the hospital, where he tested positive for coronavirus. As a person with multiple pre-existing conditions, his life is in danger.

He also has cystic myelomalacia, a rare disease that affects his respiratory system, making him part of an especially vulnerable population more likely to suffer more severe impacts of the novel coronavirus.And Swain isnt the only inmate whose life is on the line.

Charles Hobbs Jr., who was a 51-year-old inmate at a Miami-Dade jail, died earlier this month after being diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the Miami Herald. More than 300 inmates in the county’s three jails had contracted the virus by May 4, and by Tuesday that number was up to nearly 500, the newspaper reported.

Although Hobbs had been allowed release from jail on house arrest, he couldn’t pay $20,000 in bonds he owed and was forced to remain in jail, according to a federal lawsuit theMiami Herald obtained.

Gregory Arrington, a fellow inmate ofHobbs, said in court documents related to the suit that about four weeks before his death, Hobbs became sick with a cough and congestion. [] After about two weeks of having those symptoms, Charles condition deteriorated dramatically over the course of a week or a week and a half, Arrington said.On at least three occasions, Charles had a high fever.

Arrington went on to say that a nurse only checked Hobbs temperature a few times and on April 28, he had a “medical emergency. [] When the medical staff was trying to take Charles out of our dorm, Charles began shaking violently in his bed. To me, it looked like Charles was having a seizure. The nurses had to hold Charles body down to prevent him from falling out of his bunk bed. It was terrifying, Arrington wrote.

Statements from both Arrington and Swainwereincluded in the lawsuit filed against the Miami Department of CorrectionsApril 6. It calls for the release of vulnerable people in Miami city jails. Swainsstatementdescribing the horribly inhumane conditions inmates suffer was also published on The Appeal criminal justice news site.

There are people in here who have AIDS, people who are recently coming out of surgery, people who are elderly, he wrote. Despite that, there are no measures taken to protect us from new people who circulate through our cell every day. We see people who are coughing, have fevers, and are otherwise ill, but they arent tested and we dont know what they have.

In one example, he described a cart nurse passing out medication while coughing and sneezing for about a month before he was quarantined.We have people in this unit bleeding, yet we dont even have bleach, Swain wrote.Ive seen blood on the floor because the supposed cleaning products they give us cant even clean that up.

He said inmates live about two feet from other people at all times and one wall has 16 beds of “medical housing.” Inmates share toilets, sinks, remotes, Swain listed.I cant trust Corrections to take care of us if we do contract the virus. In my experience, Corrections cuts costs and ignores the medical needs of inmates, Swain wrote.For example, I slipped and fell in February 2017, and hurt my wrist. I filed grievance after grievance to be taken to the hospital, but my grievances went unanswered for more than a year. When I was finally taken to the hospital, more than a year and a half later, I no longer had any feeling in my left arm.

RELATED:’Like a f—ing slave ship’: Lawyer details horrific conditions at Rikers Island jails amid COVID-19

RELATED: ‘Situation is just going to get worse,’ union rep warns as first federal inmate dies of coronavirus

2020-05-22 01:50:18

Daily Kos

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