Culture, Highlights
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Fifth Black Female Prisoner to Be Found Dead in Jail Cell

It’s never easy to unveil saddening news, let alone write about it. Perhaps that is why this particular post is somewhat difficult for me to construct. If you’ve been following the story pertaining to the deaths of the four African American female prisoners, then you would be informed regarding the details. Unfortunately it would seem that there has been a fifth victim of late; Ryanette Turner. Turner, a 42-year-old wife and mother of eight, was reportedly found dead in her jail cell in Mount Vernon, N.Y. Tuner is just the fifth victim to have been found dead in her cell this month, producing an array of unanswered questions.

Turner, who was arrested on Saturday due to shoplifting charges. She had been placed in a holding cell to await arraignment. According to the New York Times, Turner was taken to the hospital on Sunday, due to reports that she was not feeling well. She had been brought back shortly after, only to have been found in her cell unconscious on Monday afternoon. The cause of death is still unknown to the family, but Turner’s medical reports reveals a history of hypertension and bariatric surgery, which is caused by a procedure for weight loss and can lead to complications.

It is an unusually odd circumstance considering Turner’s death occurred merely two weeks after Chicago civil rights advocate Sandra Bland, 28, was found dead in her Texas jail cell. Bland was reported to have been taken into custody for not using a turn signal when she changed lanes on a highway. The death was reported a suicide, although many speculate whether that might not have been the case. Turner and Bland are just two of the five African American female victims, who were found dead in their jail cells. The other victims include Kindra Chapman, an 18-year-old arrested on robbery chargesJoyce Curnel, a 50-year-old arrested on shoplifting charges, and Ralkina Jones, a 37-year-old who was arrested over a heated argument with her husband at work.

Not only is this particular story highly eerie, but it opposes a serious question regarding the security procedures and safety in correctional centers. You would expect the outside world to be vastly more dangerous than the one behind bars. However, that truth is proving to be more and more questionable each day. Although these are convicted criminals we are referring to, that does not make them any less human. With that being said, it is astonishing that there isn’t more to be done regarding heir safety. My heart truly goes out to the families of all the victims.

What is your opinion on this particular story? I would very much like to hear your views. Please feel free to direct any questions or comments below!

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I am a journalistic enthusiast, born and bred in Washington, D.C. When I'm not busy meticulously constructing posts, I can be found burying my head in an epic novel, cooking a delicious mess in the kitchen, scouring local thrift stores, and spending way too much time binging on Netflix (Arrested Development anyone?). I cannot live without a good playlist (Billy Holiday is preferred), working wifi (sometimes not always working), and Dunkin Donuts coffee (caramel swirl is my go-to flavor). If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to direct them to the email below. Happy Reading!

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