Ad Spot

Another inmate dies in Parchman prison

JACKSON (AP) — Another Mississippi inmate died in a troubled state prison Wednesday, and state corrections officials said his death appeared to be a suicide by hanging.

At least 10 inmates have died in the state’s prisons since late December, most of them in outbursts of violence. Eight of the men died in the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman, including the one Wednesday.

Another Parchman inmate was found dead Saturday hanging in a cell that investigators said was locked from the inside. Authorities have not yet said whether they believe that, too, was a suicide.

The state Department of Corrections did not immediately release the name of the inmate found dead Wednesday because officials were working to notify his family. He was in a single-person cell.

Mississippi’s new governor, Republican Tate Reeves, was inaugurated Jan. 14. Two days later, he appointed an interim leader to replace the corrections commissioner who resigned when the previous governor left office. Reeves also appointed a group to conduct a nationwide search for a new commissioner. Reeves said violence in the prisons has been a “catastrophe.”

Violence is a recurring problem in Mississippi prisons, where many jobs for guards are unfilled. Health department inspections also show Parchman has longstanding problems with broken sinks and toilets in cells, holes in cell walls, widespread mold and mildew in showers and sanitation problems in kitchens.

More than two dozen inmates sued the state Jan. 14, saying understaffed prisons are “plagued by violence” and inmates are forced to live in decrepit and dangerous conditions. Entertainers Jay-Z and Yo Gotti are paying for the attorneys in the case, a spokesperson for the two confirmed. All of the plaintiffs have been inmates at Parchman.

Jay-Z’s charity group, Team Roc, is urging people to gather Friday at the Mississippi Capitol to protest conditions in the state prison system. But the legislators who have the power to change the system won’t be around to hear them.

Members of the Mississippi House and Senate began their annual session in early January, but few bills have been filed. For the second week in a row, legislators plan to leave the Capitol for the weekend on Thursday.

On behalf of Roc Nation, rapper Yo Gotti on Wednesday published an open letter to Mississippi’s governor about prison conditions.

“The humanitarian crisis that is unfolding in Mississippi today … is as immoral as it is counter-productive,” said the letter. “For if a goal of incarceration is rehabilitation, how can we ever hope to return these men to society when the extreme neglect and dangerous conditions under which they are subjected strips away every last bit of self-worth?”

The letter appeared in print editions of the Clarion Ledger newspaper. Team Roc is also paying for a billboard near the state Capitol with the message: “Fix Your Prisons.” Neither Jay-Z nor Yo Gotti will attend the rally Friday, but a spokesperson said Team Roc could sent another representative.

 

News

Local Girl Scouts ready to sell thousands of cookies this year

News

Christ Church’s oldest member sees many changes over the years

BREAKING NEWS

Natchez police investigating Thursday night drive-by shooting

BREAKING NEWS

Bishop Gunn suspends all future activity; Crawfish Boil canceled

News

Suspect in Sunday Minor Street shooting turns himself in

News

Ready to roll: Krewe of Phoenix Parade set for Friday night

News

Dunleith working to reopen soon

News

Judge: No raises for public defenders

News

State legislators celebrate Natchez Day Wednesday

News

Two public defenders say they deserve pay raises like other colleagues

News

Morgantown residents still wait on roadwork

News

Teen auto theft suspect turns himself in

News

Wilkinson County senior named DAR Good Citizen

News

Photo feature: Local resident captures amazing photograph of river

News

Students at Alcorn State hold vigil on campus for students killed in shooting

BREAKING NEWS

Update: Adams County man reportedly connected to Alcorn shooting deaths turns himself in

News

Two Alcorn State students killed in off-campus shooting

News

Suspect on the run from October 2019 incident arrested

News

Natchez Little Theatre makes donation to ACCS theater program

BREAKING NEWS

8 teens apprehended after taking stolen car for joy ride

News

Sunday shooting victim being treated at Merit Health Natchez

News

The Dart: Woman enjoys making, selling holiday baskets

News

Feral felines flood downtown during annual mystic krewe Mardi Gras parade

News

Bring on the Beads: Vidalia celebrates Mardi Gras with parade Saturday