Sunday, February 1, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Guard in hot cell death has record of leaving post

By
From page A7 | May 30, 2014 |

NEW YORK — A Rikers Island jail guard who investigators say left her post without permission as a mentally ill inmate lay dying in his 101-degree cell in February had been disciplined four years earlier for a similar infraction, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

Carol Lackner was accused in 2010 of leaving her post and leaving Rikers Island entirely without permission while working in a women’s section of the jail, according to the documents obtained through a public records request.

That administrative charge was settled, her attorney says, when Lackner agreed to give up five vacation days. He said she was on a break when she left, which is nevertheless a policy violation.

More recently, Lackner was suspended for 30 days following the Feb. 15 death of 56-year-old Jerome Murdough. A city corrections investigation found she abandoned her post in a mental health observation unit 20 minutes before the homeless ex-Marine was discovered unresponsive in his overheated cell.

Murdough “basically baked to death” when he was left unchecked for at least four hours in a part of the jail that had a malfunctioning heater, a city official told the AP. While logbook entries indicate Lackner toured the area every half hour as required, she isn’t seen on video doing so, according to another city official. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not permitted to discuss specifics of the case.

Lackner, 34, didn’t respond to calls and emails seeking comment. Her attorney, Damond Carter, denied accusations she left her post without permission. He said she was brought in as a relief guard after effectively working three straight shifts and wasn’t given any information about complaints of excessive heat, which she herself could feel.

“It’s unfair to lay everything at her foot,” said Carter, emphasizing that multiple factors contributed to Murdough’s death, including his being sent to Rikers in the first place after being unable to make $2,500 bail on a misdemeanor trespassing arrest.

A lawyer for Murdough’s mother, who is planning a $25 million lawsuit against the city, said in a statement that no other prisoners should “suffer and die at the hands of corrections officers who do not live up to their responsibilities.”

“Had the city properly supervised this officer, who had a history of abandoning her post, Jerome might still be alive,” Derek Sells said.

Murdough suffered from bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, according to his family. He was on psychotropic medication, which experts say can make people more sensitive to the heat. The medical examiner’s office says more tests are needed to determine exactly how he died, but an investigator said he appeared to have died from hyperthermia.

In addition to suspending Lackner over the Murdough case, corrections officials also reassigned a warden and transferred a mechanics supervisor.

The documents obtained by AP also show correction officials brought administrative charges against Lackner in 2011 for failing to report that she had been arrested. Lackner allegedly kicked in a wooden gate at a man’s Queens home, according to a criminal complaint. That case was settled with her pleading guilty to disorderly conduct, a noncriminal violation, and paying $1,100 in restitution. There was no administrative disposition of that case, her lawyer said.

Lackner met with corrections officials in 2012 but never faced a trial on the administrative charges. Personnel records of correction officers, including disciplinary matters, are confidential, a department spokesman said.

The deaths of Murdough and Bradley Ballard, another mentally ill inmate whose death five months before Murdough’s in a similar mental observation unit was reported by the AP last week, have raised questions about the city’s ability to properly care for the mentally ill, who represent a growing proportion of inmates.

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Fire Department honors top firefighters

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
 
4th annual Health and Wellness Fair a big success

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
 
 
Banish dry skin this winter

By Sarah Porkka | From Page: C4, 1 Comment

Chocolate: A long journey to deliciousness

By Karen Metz | From Page: C4

 
County board to consider DA reorganization plan

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

Eurozone offers lesson in debt

By Mark Sievers | From Page: B7

 
Rodriguez graduate completes basic training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

 
Fairfield police log: Jan. 30, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Suisun City police log: Jan. 30, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
.

US / World

From ocean to ocean, through the Panama Canal

By The Associated Press | From Page: C1

 
NASA launches Earth-observing satellite

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
‘Rolled Sleeves Bandit’ tied to 7 bank robberies in custody

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Bay Area agency accuses former official of embezzling $1.3M

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Los Angeles female-only mosque may be first in US

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

California health care contract fight resolved

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Man arrested after body parts found in suitcase

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Scientist considered father of birth control pill dies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Letter with suspicious powder received at Samaritan’s Purse

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Snails slither into spa scene in Thailand and around world

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
Not so ‘Good to Go’ when man gets $18,000 toll bridge bill

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Hatfields, McCoys make moonshine legally in southern W.Va.

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Airport authorities: Traveler beats homeless man with chair

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Kerry: ‘Enormous interest in new relationship with Cuba

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Drivers: Return to your dealers for a 2nd air bag recall fix

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Vatican investigates 2 cases of child porn possession

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Islamic State fighters admit defeat in Syrian town of Kobani

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

From car lots to city budgets, cheap oil means change

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Africa agrees to send 7,500 troops to fight Boko Haram

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
5 given preliminary charges over jihadi network in France

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Fire devastates major Russian library, threatens rare texts

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Swiss police: 4 dead after avalanche hits group of skiers

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Fire at Bangladesh plastics factory kills at least 13

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Civilians flee east Ukraine town as fighting intensifies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

British actress Geraldine McEwan dies at age 82

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Greek leader tamps down rhetoric, vows to pay off debts

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Iraqi libraries ransacked by Islamic State group in Mosul

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
.

Opinion

 
Sound off for Feb. 1, 2015

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

 
Good old days weren’t as good as we remember

By Megan Mcardle | From Page: A8

Editorial Cartoon: Feb. 1, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: Feb. 1, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: Feb. 1, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Prayer, commonly misunderstood

By The Rev. Rick L. Stonestreet | From Page: C3, 3 Comments

 
Sundance doc pulls back curtain on Scientology

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Horoscopes: Feb. 1, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

Volunteer or visit because February is National Salute to Veteran Patients

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
.

Entertainment

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Review: ‘First Bad Man’ is Miranda July’s debut novel

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Lorrie Moore nominated for short story prize

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

New book to feature unpublished Hemingway conversations

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

.

Sports

Mustangs win the whole Encalada

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Super Bowl the final act of the NFL’s worst season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Lowest prices on last-minute Super Bowl tickets near $9,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Seau, Bettis, Brown, Haley, Shields voted into Hall of Fame

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Rodgers wins MVP, Watt unanimous top AP defensive player

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Lydia Ko takes No. 1 spot at 17, Na Yeon Choi wins opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Laird takes a 3-shot lead in Phoenix Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

On the money: Low gas prices, incentives change math for electric cars

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Small talk: NFL players find second careers as entrepreneurs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

Recalls this week: space heaters, orbital sanders

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Sumptuous seaside hotel sells for record-shattering $360M

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Review: Open e-book format comes with headaches

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
.

Obituaries

Garry A. Britton

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Anthony Neal Hunley

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Frank Z. Perez

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Joe Lambert Robinson

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Flora Mae Brooks

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Otilia (Tela) Quinn

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

Lester Singer

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
WillIiam “Bill” Hunter

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics