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12 incarcerated men died in state custody in February and four so far in March

At least three incarcerated men died in Alabama state prisons in the final days of February. So far in March, four have died.

At least three incarcerated men died in Alabama state prisons over the last days of February, with an additional four confirmed dead in March, according to a spokesperson for the Alabama Department of Corrections.

Twelve incarcerated men have now been confirmed dead in state custody this February, and four thus far in March. Those totals are likely undercounts.

Michael James Hubbard, a 46-year-old incarcerated man at St. Clair Correctional Facility, was pronounced dead at an area hospital on the evening of Feb. 22, according to the ADOC spokesperson. No other details related to the events preceding his death were released by the ADOC.

A source within the Alabama prison system with knowledge of the incident involving Hubbard said he succumbed to a severe head injury caused by a beating he suffered in the weeks before his death. This has yet to be confirmed by the ADOC.

Hubbard is the fourth individual to be confirmed dead in the month of February at St. Clair Correctional facility.

Five days following Hubbard’s death, Fredrick Bishop and Charles Waltman, two incarcerated men at Easterling Correctional Facility, were reported dead, according to the ADOC spokesperson. Both men had been found unresponsive and later transported to the health care unit within the Barbour County facility for treatment of an unspecified ailment. Life-saving measures were administered on both Waltman and Bishop, but medical staff at the facility was not able to revive them.

Both men were later pronounced dead that Monday,  by an attending physician at the facility, the department spokesperson said. Bishop was 55 years old and lived in Lineville prior to his incarceration, according to court records. Waltman was 41 years old and lived in Opelika.

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Initial reports from the facility indicated that the deaths were overdoses, but this has yet to be officially confirmed by the ADOC.

The ADOC did confirm that attorneys and consultants with the U.S. Department of Justice “attended a 2-day visit” to Easterling Correctional Facility as part of the normal discovery process for the department’s ongoing lawsuit against the state. A source with knowledge of the federal visit said the group entered the facility that Wednesday, two days following the death of both Waltman and Bishop.

On Thursday, roughly four and a half hours northeast at Limestone Correctional Facility near Huntsville, Joshua Felton Ledlow, a 39-year-old incarcerated man, was discovered unresponsive in his cell, according to the ADOC spokesperson. Life-saving measures were administered immediately following his discovery, and he was later taken to the health care unit within the facility.

“Medical staff continued working on him, but they were unable to resuscitate him,” the department spokesperson said in a statement released on Monday. “He was pronounced deceased by the attending physician.”

The following day, another incarcerated man would be found unresponsive in his cell at the Limestone County facility.

Mohamad Osman, a 33-year-old incarcerated man at Limestone Correctional Facility, was discovered unresponsive that Friday and later transported to the health care facility, according to the ADOC. Life-saving measures were administered immediately upon his discovery, but his condition continued to deteriorate.

As had happened the day before with Ledlow, medical staff attempted but failed to revive Osman. He was pronounced dead later that same day.

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The following day at Donaldson Correctional Facility, Bobby Ray Bradley, a 69-year-old incarcerated man at the Jefferson County facility, was pronounced dead after a long bout with illness, according to the Jefferson County Coroner’s office. Bradley had been found  unresponsive on his bed in an open style dormitory that Friday, with his death believes to be of natural causes, the county coroner said on Tuesday. A source within the Alabama prison system with knowledge of Bradley’s ailment said he died of lung cancer. 

Attempts to notify Bradley’s family were unsuccessful, the county coroner’s office said on Tuesday, with the family believed to be from Piedmont.

On Sunday, Tony Edward Evans, a 51-year-old incarcerated man, was found by correctional staff in his cell at Donaldson Correctional Facility in Jefferson County. Evans was in a segregated cell, otherwise known as solitary confinement, at the time he was discovered, according to a source within the Alabama prison system with knowledge of the incident.

“Medical staff responded, evaluated Evans, and found no signs of life,” the department spokesperson said on Monday. “He was transported to the Health Care Unit where he was pronounced deceased by the attending physician.”

As with all cases of death within Alabama state prisons, the Law Enforcement Services Division of the ADOC is investigating each death, with an official cause of death in each case to be released following the results of an autopsy and official investigation, according to the ADOC.

The story has been updated to include Bobby Ray Bradley, the seventh incarcerated man to die in recent weeks, whose name was released by the Jefferson County Coroner’s office on Tuesday.

John is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can contact him at [email protected] or via Twitter.

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