Lawsuit accuses Summit County Jail of ignoring inmate’s pleas for help

A lawsuit filed earlier this month claims an inmate who died by suicide at the Summit County Jail repeatedly sought help for mental health issues that were left untreated in the months leading up to his October 2020 death.

Content advisory: This article discusses suicide, suicide attempts and mental illness. Those struggling with their mental health or thoughts of suicide can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 or call the Summit County ADM Board 24/7 hotline at 330-434-9144.

The mother of a Stow man who died by suicide in the Summit County Jail and his former wife are suing the county and the jail’s mental health provider, saying the man’s death was preventable after he begged for mental health treatment for months but was ignored.

According to the lawsuit filed Sept. 2 in the US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio Eastern Division in Cleveland, Patrick Butcher died by suicide in the jail on Oct. 12, 2020, “because the Jail’s corrections and mental-health staff were deliberately indifferent to Patrick’s serious psychiatric needs, consistent with Summit County’s failure to properly train staff in suicide prevention.”

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