Inmate Kenneth Bach (Full Name: Kenneth Galen Bach), of Chula Vista, Died While Staying at The San Diego Central Jail

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA (October 1, 2023) – A 63-year-old inmate identified as Kenneth Bach has tragically died after being found unresponsive at the San Diego Central Jail.

San Diego County officials are saying that the incident took place around 4:00 a.m. on Thursday. Kenneth Bach was arrested on Monday and booked into the San Diego Central Jail.

Correctional officers noticed that he was unresponsive in his cell. Deputies and jail medical staff entered the cell in order to perform life-saving measures.

Paramedics were also called in order to help the inmate. Sadly, Kenneth Bach was ultimately pronounced dead at the scene.

The cause and manner of his death are currently being investigated by the county Medical Examiner’s Office.


Liability For San Diego County Inmate Deaths

San Diego County has a particularly bad track record with respect to the care that they give inmates. According to Corrections 1, “San Diego County jails have been under scrutiny in recent years because of a high rate of in-custody deaths — 185 in 15 years. The Union-Tribune’s 2019 series “Dying Behind Bars” revealed the mortality rate in San Diego jails was the highest among large counties in the state.” Inmates have made numerous complaints about the county jails.

  • Inmates with disabilities have complained that they have not been given reasonable accommodations.
  • Inmates who are seriously mentally ill have said that they have not been getting adequate mental healthcare.
  • Inmates have said that correctional officers are not doing enough to prevent violent and often deadly fights from taking place.

All inmates have a constitutional rights to receive reasonably adequate care for their serious health conditions. Jail conditions can often exacerbate medical problems that inmates have. Some inmates will need help with long-term ailments. In many situations, inmates will need care for acute health needs. For example, many inmates suffer from drug or alcohol withdrawal after they enter the jail system. When a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. Many steps should be taken after any in-custody death.

  • The medical conditions of the inmate that died should be understood.
  • The care that they received while in custody should be examined.
  • An independent autopsy may need to be performed.
  • An experienced civil rights attorney should be contacted.

Jails can be truly horrible places. Part of the problem is that jail staff and correctional officers are often indifferent. It is important that inmates and their families understand that they do have rights. In particular,  the family of any person that died in custody may be able to seek some measure of justice through a civil claim. A civil rights attorney can examine all of the unique facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.


Investigating San Diego Central Jail Inmate Deaths

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family of Kenneth Galen Bach. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to police. There have already been 12 inmate deaths so far this year. It is our hope that greater oversight into the conditions at these jails will lead to lasting reform.

Do you need more information about an in-custody death at the San Diego Central Jail? Our team of civil rights advocates are here to help in any way that we can. We care deeply that inmates and their families are aware of their rights and that jails are upholding constitutional standards. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any particular incident we are here for you. You can contact us anytime at  (949) 825-5200.


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