pexels-rdne-stock-project-6069522Inmate Richard Woodford Died In Custody Following Medical Emergency at San Diego Central Jail 

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA (July 3, 2024) – A 42-year-old inmate identified as Richard Woodford has tragically died while in custody after a medical emergency at the San Diego Central Jail.

San Diego County officials are saying that the incident took place around 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Sheriff’s deputies found Richard Woodford unconscious and unresponsive after he collapsed in the shower room of the jail.

Medical staff and paramedics were called to the scene in order to help the inmate. He was transferred to a hospital in order to receive additional care.

Despite life-saving measures, Richard Woodford was later pronounced dead. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.

Liability For San Diego County Inmate Deaths

San Diego County has a particularly poor track record with respect to the care that inmates are given. According to the San Diego Tribune, “The California State Auditor concluded that conditions in San Diego County jails were so dangerous that new legislation was needed to impose reforms. The audit was requested by state lawmakers after The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that at least 140 people died in San Diego County jails between 2009 and 2019.” Inmates have reported a variety of unsafe living conditions.

  • Overcrowding: Many San Diego County jails are overcrowded. This has led to inadequate living conditions and increased tensions among inmates.
  • Inadequate Medical Care: There have been numerous complaints by inmates about not receiving adequate medical care.
  • Excessive Force: Many inmates have reported being subjected to excessive force by correctional officers.
  • Unsanitary Conditions: Several reports have highlighted unsanitary living conditions in some jails.

All jails have a legal obligation to take care of their inmates. This includes providing inmates with adequate medical care for all of their health conditions. When a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of inmates, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. There are several ways that a jail may have failed to properly care for an inmate.

  • Jail officials may have failed to medically clear an inmate before placing them in a cell.
  • Jail officials may have failed to give an inmate the medication that they needed.
  • Jail officials may have delayed transporting an inmate to the hospital in a timely manner.

Jails are often quick to claim that inmate deaths involve medical factors and circumstances beyond their control. But this is often simply not true. Many inmate deaths involve inmates receiving inadequate medical care. The family of any person who died in a San Diego County jail may have legal recourse through a wrongful death claim. A civil rights attorney can examine all of the unique facts of your case free of charge and get to the bottom of what caused any in-custody death.

Investigating San Diego County Inmate Deaths

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family of Richard Woodford. Any person who may have more information about what happened should reach out to investigators. There needs to be a thorough investigation into what went wrong.

Do you need more information about an inmate death in San Diego County? Our team of civil rights attorneys is here to answer any questions that you may have. We care deeply that inmates are aware of their rights and that jails are held accountable for their unconstitutional actions. Whether you just have legal questions or need any type of support, we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (949) 825-5200.


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