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Attorneys Representing Police Misconduct Victims Across Texas

This website is maintained by the Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C., a Dallas, Texas law firm representing people across Texas for police misconduct injury cases. We have attempted to provide useful information for those harmed by police miscponduct.

A 60-year-old Prisoner at a Sulphur Springs, Texas, is Found Unresponsive and Later Dies

Friday, November 17th, 2017

Hopkins County Courthouse, Texas (Photo: Labeled for reuse)

In Hopkins County Jail in Sulphur Springs, Texas, 60-year-old Melvin Williams was discovered unresponsive in his cell on Tuesday morning, November 14, 2017. A jailer was delivering breakfast when Williams was found. He was breathing but unresponsive. Williams was taken to CHRISTUS Mother Francis in Sulphur Springs and then transferred to a Tyler hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Sheriff Lewis Tatum of the Hopkins County Sheriff’s Department said the cause of death is unknown. He also doesn’t yet know why Williams was transferred to Tyler. As is the case whenever there is a custodial death, Texas Rangers are investigating the death. In addition, the Texas Commission on Jail Standards (TCJS) examines records and conducts inspections to determine whether minimum jail standards were being met at the time a custodial death occurred.

The role of TCJS is listed in the Texas Administrative Code. The organization prepares Jail Inspection Reports that reflect areas in which jails allegedly fail to meet minimum jail standards. The following is an example of the types of standards jails must meet.

  • At each facility, there must be an appropriate number of jailers 24 hours per day. Jailers must have face-to-face observations of prisoners every 60 minutes at most. In areas where prisoners have exhibited bizarre behavior or are known to be mentally ill, potentially suicidal, or assaultive, observations are required every 30 minutes or less.

As with every post on this website, we are only providing information in this post and do not make any allegation or assertion that anyone acted inappropriately or engaged in misconduct.

–Guest Contributor

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