Testimony to resume in Alabama prison mental health care trial

(CBS Boston)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A trial resumes this week in the lawsuit accusing Alabama of failing to provide constitutionally adequate care to mentally ill inmates.

A federal judge will hold a settlement conference Tuesday on an emergency motion from inmates’ attorneys seeking additional protections for suicidal prisoners. The motion was filed after an inmate killed himself just weeks after testifying at the trial.

Twenty-four year-old Jamie Wallace was found hanged last month in his cell at a Bullock County prison. Wallace had testified that he had previously tried to kill himself and claimed a prison officer once offered him a razor to do the deed.

The lawsuit accuses Alabama of showing deliberate indifference toward inmates. The state prison system maintains it provides adequate care.

Testimony in the case will resume Wednesday.

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