Jackson County inmate dies after being placed in restraint chair - KCTV5

Jackson County inmate dies after being placed in restraint chair

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The family of 35-year-old Richard Degraffenreid says he was brain dead on arrival. He ended up in jail Thursday night because of a parole violation. (Submitted) The family of 35-year-old Richard Degraffenreid says he was brain dead on arrival. He ended up in jail Thursday night because of a parole violation. (Submitted)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

A death investigation is underway in the Jackson County Jail after an inmate was rushed from a restraint chair to the hospital.

The family of 35-year-old Richard Degraffenreid says he was brain dead on arrival. He ended up in jail Thursday night because of a parole violation.

Ruth Garrison said her son worked in the heat and had a history of drug problems. She questions what happened inside the jail and who checked on her son.

“I'm numb. My heart is broken. I feel like it's breaking inside of me. There's a piece of it gone. It aches. It hurts so bad,” Garrison said.

Degraffenreid’s mother says a chaplain from Truman Medical Center called her in the middle of the night. The chaplain said her son had been in jail and was in the emergency room.

“When I walked in the room, they had lost the heartbeat,” she said.

Garrison says doctors told her he was brain dead. Degraffenreid had been shackled to a restraint chair. The jail says the restraint chair is used for combative inmates.

“I don't know what happened, just wish they would let me know what is going on,” Garrison said. 

Garrison spent the day telling family and friends her son is dead. She's waiting for the autopsy report to help clear up exactly what happened.

“I just wish I could get answers. I want somebody to find out what happened to my son and why he's dead,” she said.

Guards are supposed to perform routine checks on inmates. That's going to be important information in the investigation.

The jail released a statement saying they did numerous checks. The family says there are cameras in the jail. They want to see the video.

What happened to Degraffenreid echoes another death that took place inside the Jackson County Jail.

In January, a woman died after complaining of chest pains. The family tells KCTV5 News that Regina Thurman was offered Tums.

Thurman finally called her daughter and her daughter called 911. An autopsy shows Thurman died of a heart attack. Her family plans to sue the jail for medical neglect.

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