Jail inmate dies by suicide
Man held on felony assault charge
Portsmouth Herald - 8/23/2017
BRENTWOOD - A 64-year-old county inmate, being held for attempted aggravated felonious assault, died by suicide Tuesday morning, said Rockingham County Department of Corrections Superintendent Steve Church.
The inmate's identity is being withheld until all notifications have been made to his family, he said.
The inmate had been evaluated by mental health professionals who advised that he be checked every 15 minutes, according to the jail superintendent. That procedure was in place, but the inmate was able to cause his own death using a jail-supplied blanket, Church said.
"It's unfortunate," the corrections superintendent said. "All of our protocols were being followed. As usual, our staff did an outstanding job."
Church said the inmate was discovered dead at about 4 a.m. on Tuesday. He said he had been incarcerated at the jail since Aug. 15 and was being held on $50,000 cash bail.
Church said he's worked at the county jail for 28 years and during that time the suicide rate has been about one every two or three years. He said about 4,000 inmates are housed in the Rockingham County House of Corrections every year.
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