D.C. sex offenders to get roommates in jail for their safety

WASHINGTON — Accused sex offenders at the D.C. Jail are getting roommates, and it’s all about their own safety.

Four inmates at the jail have committed suicide in the past year, according Paul Quander, the deputy mayor for public safety and justice.

The Department of Corrections is making adjustments, but there is a common thread among the inmates themselves.

“The most recent suicides have all involved individuals who have been charged with sex offenses,” Quander says.

A number of inmates at the D.C. Jail are housed in single cells. Statistics indicate such cells are where most suicides take place.

The latest death has altered how the Department of Corrections houses accused sex offenders.

“We have identified every inmate in the jail who is a sex offender, and we have placed them in cells with other people,” Quander says.

“Now every sex offender will be housed with another inmate to reduce the likelihood that they will commit a suicide,” he says.

Correctional officers are also making the rounds to check on inmates more frequently than they used to.

The rotations happen every 15 minutes, and electronic devices confirm evaluations have happened.

In the last decade, seven inmates at the D.C. Jail have committed suicide.


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