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Black Man Found Severely Dehydrated In Jail Cell Ruled A Homicide

The tragic death of a Black Milwaukee man found dehydrated in jail cell has been ruled a homicide by the state’s medical examiner reports Fusion:

Over four months after Terrill Thomas was found dead in his Milwaukee County Jail cell, a medical examiner has ruled his April 24 death a homicide, citing to severe dehydration as the cause.

Thomas, 38, had been arrested on April 15 for a shooting in Milwaukee’s Potowatomi Casino. His family claims he was incensed over the the theft of his Mercedes-Benz, and that he had been in the midst of a mental breakdown. Thomas was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports he was awaiting a psychiatric evaluation at the time of his death.

Reports of the medical examiner’s findings state that Thomas had been placed in solitary confinement at the Milwaukee County Jail. According to Marcus Berry, a fellow inmate in the jail at the time, the faucet in Thomas’ cell had been turned off due to his behavior before having been moved to solitary. Berry also claimed Thomas had refused to eat the Nutriloaf provided to him as a meal.

“I could tell he was getting weaker,” Berry told the Journal Sentinel in July. “One day he just lay down, dehydrated and hungry.”

Erik Heipt, an attorney for the Thomas family, told that “there was at least one other inmate, if not two, that became aware that Mr. Thomas’ water had been shut off and was repeatedly urging jail guards to turn the water back on.”






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