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Seventh person since November dies in custody of Louisville Metro Corrections

Exterior of Louisville Metro Corrections.
Roberto Roldan

A person in custody of Louisville Metro Department of Corrections died Saturday, jail officials said.

This was the seventh in-custody death since Nov. 29. A corrections officer found the 32-year-old person unresponsive at around 11:15 a.m., according to a news release from Metro Corrections Assistant Director Steve Durham. The person was transported to University of Louisville Hospital by ambulance, where they died at 12:15 p.m.

Durham said in the release that Louisville Metro Police’s Public Integrity Unit is investigating the death, and Metro Corrections Director Dwayne Clark has called for the Professional Standards Unit to review the case. Corrections officials said they will not identify the person until they notify their family. The deceased was booked into Metro Corrections on March 9 on a parole violation warrant.

Metro Council members voted last month to hire a third-party investigator to review the recent deaths and any issues with training or other policies at Metro Corrections that could have contributed to them. The final report should  include recommendations for how to reform the troubled department.

The council also unanimously approved a no-confidence vote against Clark at the same meeting.

After the most recent death on Saturday, council president David James, a Democrat who represents District 6, repeated his calls for Mayor Greg Fischer to implement changes at the jail.

“I think the mayor should fire the leadership staff that he has at Metro Corrections and put in new people and move forward,” James said.

Fischer ordered a separate third-party review of Metro Corrections last month. He also reached an agreement with the union representing Metro Corrections employees to increase pay for officers.

This story was updated at 4:58 p.m. Breya Jones contributed to this report.

John, News Editor for LPM, is a corps member with Report For America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Email John at jboyle@lpm.org.