Inmate Roselee Bartolacci  Died After Being Found Unresponsive In Jail Cell At Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility In Santee

SANTEE, CALIFORNIA (July 27, 2023) – An inmate identified as Roselee Bartolacci has died following a medical emergency at the Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility in Santee.

San Diego County officials are saying that the accident took place around 12:30 a.m. on Monday. Correctional officers were conducting a housing unit check when they noticed that Roselee Bartolacci was unresponsive.

Correctional officers and medical staff entered the cell in order to help her. She was the sole occupant of the cell at the time of the incident.

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


Liability For San Diego County Inmate Deaths

San Diego County has a very poor record for the care that it gives inmates. This has inexorably led to a large number of inmate deaths. According to the 2022 San Diego In-Custody Death Study, “Reporting by local media and advocacy groups suggests the death rate in San Diego jails surpasses the death rates in all other large county jails in California (McDonald, Davis, and Schroeder 2019). Based on data from the California Department of Justice, about one inmate dies every month on average in San Diego jails.” There are a number of steps that jails should take in order to prevent inmate deaths.

  • Jails should make sure that inmates have a proper health screening before being admitted.
  • Jails should ensure that correctional officers are well trained.
  • Violent inmates should typically be segregated away from non-violent inmates.
  • Inmates should get prompt care in the event of a medical emergency.

Inmate deaths are often preventable. While some inmates do die from long-term injuries or natural causes, this tends to be the exception. Instead, many inmates die due to medical neglect or poor jail conditions. For example, a jail may have failed to give an inmate proper follow-up care as they continued to show signs of deteriorating health. There are a number of contributing factors that could lead to any in-custody death.

  • An inmate may have fallen ill after a drug overdose.
  • An inmate may have died after going through withdrawal.
  • An inmate may have died after a fall brought on by a medical condition.
  • An inmate may have died after not getting any help in the midst of a medical emergency.

When a jail is deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. The family of any person that died in-custody may have legal recourse. Sadly, though, jails will often deny all responsibility if any inmate dies in their care. It is crucial that all evidence related to any in-custody death is properly preserved.


Investigating Inmate Deaths At The Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility In Santee

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family of Roselee Bartolacci. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to investigators. It is our sincere hope that steps are taken to prevent other tragedies like this.

Do you need more information about an inmate death at the Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility in Santee? Our team of civil rights advocates are here to answer any questions that you may have. We care deeply that inmates are aware of their rights and that those rights are being protected. 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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