UPDATE: Lawsuit filed in inmate's death

Published: Jul. 9, 2019 at 8:16 PM EDT
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Update: 12/3/2019 5:00 P.M.

Last July, a Parkersburg man died hours after being booked into the North Central Regional Jail.

Corrections officials said at the time it was the result of a "medical episode".

But family member say it was because of the actions of corrections officers.

A lawsuit, filed by the mother of inmate Zachary Bailey, names the West Virginia Division of Corrections, and its superintendent, Joseph Wood.

Bailey was transferred to the regional jail July 8, after his arrest for the breaking and entering at a Parkersburg business.

Before that transfer, when he was at the Wood County Holding Center, Bailey was briefly hospitalized for injuries the suit says were suffered in an auto accident the day before his arrest.

The suit says when Bailey arrived at the regional jail, he was subdued by several correctional officers, after he was reported as acting "agitated", and making incoherent statements.

One of those officers, the suit says, laid on top of him while the others watched, and continued to do so while Bailey pleaded and said he was not able to breathe.

The suit also alleges attorneys were told in November, after seeking surveillance video of the incident, that the camera that would have recorded it at the time was inoperable, and had been inoperable for several days.

The suit names several charges, including malicious conduct, negligent hiring and supervision, and a violation of Bailey's state and federal constitutional rights.

Robin Bailey's attorney, Dante DiTrapano, says he has statements from two inmates who witnessed the incident.

The state Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety, which oversees the corrections division, deferred comment to its filings on the case.

According to the Kanawha County Circuit Court, where the suit is filed, there had been no filings in response as of Tuesday.

UPDATE: 07/9/19 1 P.M.

A Parkersburg man who died late Monday evening at the North Central Regional Jail had received "outside medical attention" after he was booked into the Wood County holding center earlier in the evening, authorities said.

According to a criminal complaint in Wood County Magistrate Court, Zachary Bailey, 26, was arrested on Monday on a breaking-and-entering charge after sheriff's deputies found him passed out inside a woodworking business in Parkersburg.

A spokesman for the West Virginia Department of Military and Public Safety said in an emailed statement that Bailey was treated at the state-operated Wood County Holding Center before being transferred to the regional jail in Doddridge County. The statement did not indicate what he was treated for.

The spokesman said Bailey died later Monday evening after suffering another "medical episode" while he was still in the holding section at the regional jail.

"The initial indication is that it may be drug-related," the spokesman said.

Bailey's death remains under investigation, along with three other recent deaths in West Virginia's regional-jail system.

The media contact for the West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety says an inmate has died.

Zachary Bailey died late Monday evening at the North Central Regional Jail. He says the incident is still under investigation, but involved a medical episode. The initial indication is that it may be drug-related. The inmate was still in the holding section at the time.

The inmate had required outside medical attention earlier that evening after he was booked into our custody at the holding facility in Wood County.

Another inmate at the jail, Jason Davenport, recently died there. He was discovered in his cell unresponsive about 9 p.m. Sunday, June 30.