Male Inmate, 57,  Died In-Custody While Staying At Elmwood Correctional Facility In Milpitas

MILPITAS, CALIFORNIA (September 4, 2023) – A male inmate has tragically died during his stay after being found unresponsive in his cell at Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas.

Santa Clara County officials are saying that the incident began around 11:22 a.m. on May 31, 2023. Correctional officers noticed that a male inmate was unresponsive in his cell.

Deputies and medical staff entered the cell and began life-saving measures. He was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead that evening.

The decedent was booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on several drug possession charges. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.


Liability For Inmate Deaths At The Elmwood Correctional Facility

Drug overdoses remain one of the main causes of inmate death in the United States. According to KFF Health News, “As the opioid crisis ravages America, overdose deaths are sweeping through every corner of the nation, including jails and prisons. Criminal justice experts suggest that decades of using the legal system instead of community-based addiction treatment to address drug use have not led to a drop in drug use or overdoses.” Many inmate deaths are also due to drug withdrawal. There are a number of steps that jails should take if they suspect an inmate may be going through a drug overdose.

  • An inmate may need to be given
  • An inmate should be given follow up care at the hospital.
  • An inmate may need to be medically monitored for an extended period.

Every inmate has a constitutional right to receive reasonably adequate healthcare. This includes getting care if they are in the midst of an overdose or going through withdrawal. Any inmate going through withdrawal will typically need to undergo medical detoxification under the supervision of a doctor. If a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. There are many ways that a jail may have failed to give an inmate proper care.

  • An inmate may not have received naloxone during an overdose.
  • Correctional officers may not have followed the advice of doctors or medical staff.
  • Jail staff may not have timely intervened to help an inmate in the midst of an emergency.

A large portion of in-custody deaths are preventable and due to inadequate medical care. Jails are supposed to be proactive about keeping inmates healthy. But in far too many circumstances, jail staff will wait until an inmate is in serious medical distress before they will bother to do anything. The family of any inmate that died in-custody may be able to seek some measure of accountability through a constitutional claim.

Getting Legal Help After An In-Custody Death

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family of the inmate that died at The Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to investigators. It is our sincere hope that measures are taken to prevent other tragedies like this.

Do you need more information about an in-custody death at Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas? Our team of civil rights advocates are here to help in any way that we can. We care deeply that inmates are aware of their rights and jails are held accountable for their neglect. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any in-custody death we may be able to help. You can reach out to us anytime at (949) 825-5200.


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