Sufficient Facts Alleged Regarding Suicide of Detainee to Permit "Deliberate Indifference" Lawsuit Targeting Jail Staff to Continue

Short v. McEathron, No. Civ.A.5:04 CV 00043, 2004 WL 2475561 (W.D. Va. 2004)

Suicides and suicide attempts by jail and prison inmates with a mental disorder are unfortunately not a rare event.  Following an inmate suicide, a lawsuit may be filed that asserts that correctional officials did not take adequate steps to prevent the suicide.  The United States Supreme Court in Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 848 (1994), established that a prison official may be held liable under federal law if the official "knows that inmates face a substantial risk of serious harm and disregards that risk by failing to take reasonable measures to abate it."  Such a complaint is widely referred to as a "deliberate indifference" claim...

Found in DMHL Volume 24 Issue 1