Tavae Walker (Full Name: Tavae Stalks Walker), of Fontana, Died While Staying At The Smith Correctional Facility In Banning

BANNING, CALIFORNIA (August 29, 2023) – An inmate identified as Tavae Walker has tragically died after being found unconscious in his jail cell at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning.

Riverside County officials are saying that the incident began on Sunday. Correctional officers noticed that Tavae Walker was unresponsive in his jail cell.

Jail and medical staff entered the cell and began life-saving measures in order to resuscitate the inmate. However, those efforts were not successful and Tavae Walker was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said that there are no signs of foul play. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.


Liability For Riverside County Inmate Deaths

Riverside County has a particularly poor track record when it comes to taking care of inmates. In fact, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department is currently under investigation after a large number of inmate deaths and excessive force claims. According to the Desert Sun, “Attorney General Rob Bonta announced Thursday that his investigators will probe whether Sheriff Chad Bianco’s department has taken part in a pattern or practice of unconstitutional conduct in violation of state or federal law.” Inmates have reported many forms of mistreatment.

  • There are allegations that inmates were denied adequate medical care.
  • There are allegations that inmates were not given mental health care.
  • There are allegations that correctional officers would repeatedly use excessive force.

All inmates have  a constitutional right to receive reasonably adequate healthcare. This should start when each inmate is first admitted. Every inmate is unique and has different health needs. For example, some inmates may require various medications. When 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 contributed to an inmate’s death.

  • Prison officials may have failed to intervene when an inmate was in medical distress.
  • Prison officials may have failed to properly treat an inmate going through an overdose.
  • Prison officials may have failed to properly treat an inmate going through withdrawal.

Jails are often quick to label inmate deaths as “natural.” But this designation is often highly misleading. One study from UCLA found that the average age of “natural” in custody deaths in LA County was 40. While it is possible for a person to die at any age, in-custody deaths for inmates in their 20’s or 30’s often involve medical neglect. The family of any person that died in custody may be able to seek some measure of justice through a civil claim.


Investigating Inmate Deaths At The Smith Correctional Facility In Banning

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family of Tavae Walker. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to investigators. It is our sincere hope that county officials will consider additional measures to prevent similar tragedies. More needs to be done to ensure that the constitutional rights of inmates in Riverside County are being protected.

Do you need more information about an inmate death at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning? Our team of civil rights advocates are here to answer any questions that you may have. We focus on helping people who have been harmed by police abuse and jail neglect. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any incident we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (949) 825-5200.


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