File: A handful of 2 milligram Xanax pills against a textured background. American jails are risking prisoners' lives through benzodiazepine withdrawal. (Flickr / Dean)
14 Sep 2015

Questionable Medical Care Turns Short Jail Stays Into Death Sentences

When Jesse Jacobs reported to the Galveston County Jail to serve a 30-day sentence for a DUI, he did so knowing that if everything went well, he would be out in 12 to 15 days. Six days later, he was dead. Jacobs was one of the nearly 1000 people who die each year in America’s jails, according to statistics released by the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics. Like Jacobs, four in every ten of these people die in their first seven days in jail.