More than 130 people have died in San Diego County jails since 2009, the year Bill Gore took over as sheriff. That’s an average higher than one inmate per month, every month, over the past 10 years.
Some are claimed by natural causes — chronic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes often found in people who end up in jail. Others are murdered or overdose on drugs.
Dozens have taken their own lives even though Gore and his top command staff say they do everything they can to identify suicidal inmates and treat mental illness.
“The Sheriff’s Department is committed to keeping inmates safe and is continuously looking for best practices in the delivery of mental health care,” the department said in a video posted on its website in May.
A six-month investigation by The San Diego Union-Tribune shows that the county’s jail mortality rate is the highest among California’s largest county jail systems. The grim history shows no sign of waning.
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