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Mother says 'there's no excuse' for NYC jail death

March 20, 2014
Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — The 75-year-old mother of a mentally ill former Marine who died in an overheated New York City jail cell last month says "there's no excuse."

Alma Murdough (muhr-DOH') said Thursday that more must be done to find out how her 56-year-old son Jerome died.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that Murdough was found dead in a cell that was at least 100 degrees in a unit for inmates with mental illnesses at Rikers Island.

Four officials who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity say Murdough apparently didn't open a vent to let in cool air and was on anti-psychotic medication that may have made him more sensitive to heat.

Authorities are investigating.

Alma Murdough has said she wasn't notified of her son's death until the AP contacted her.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is calling the death of a mentally ill veteran in an overheated jail cell "shocking and troubling."

Speaking at a bill signing Thursday, De Blasio told reporters he didn't know how Jerome Murdough's (muhr-DOH') death could have happened.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that the 56-year-old homeless man was found dead last month in a cell that was at least 100 degrees in a unit for inmates with mental illnesses at Rikers Island.

Four officials who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity say Murdough apparently didn't open a vent to let in cool air and was on anti-psychotic medication that may have made him more sensitive to heat.

The Department of Correction is investigating the death and has acknowledged the temperature in Murdough's cell was "unusually high."

 
 

 

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