Mom fights for imprisoned son's medication inside Jackson County - KCTV5 News

Mom fights for imprisoned son's medication inside Jackson County Jail

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Jackson is back the Jackson County Jail because he didn’t finish a treatment program and was hauled back to jail. His mother, Barb Butler, questions what’s now happening to her son and if anyone really cares. (Angie Ricono/KCTV5 News) Jackson is back the Jackson County Jail because he didn’t finish a treatment program and was hauled back to jail. His mother, Barb Butler, questions what’s now happening to her son and if anyone really cares. (Angie Ricono/KCTV5 News)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Earl Jackson served in Desert Storm. He now has PTSD and struggles with drug addiction.

Jackson is back the Jackson County Jail because he didn’t finish a treatment program and was hauled back to jail. His mother, Barb Butler, questions what’s now happening to her son and if anyone really cares.

"He takes a lot of medication because of his PTSD and other things the jail has not given him anything," she said.

Butler is out of options. Her son’s prescriptions sit on her kitchen table while he sits in jail.

"It’s for anxiety," she said.

Jackson hasn’t had his medicine prescribed by the VA in more than three weeks.

"I was told he could not stop these medications cold turkey, like the way they’ve done it," Butler said.

It’s not a lack of effort.

Butler called the jail, showed up in person and left messages with the VA and local county commissioners. She even emailed the judge directly, but she’s getting nowhere.

She says her son takes numerous prescriptions for mood swings, pain, vertigo and nightmares, but she says he has only been given aspirin.

"I don’t care if you are an inmate. They are human beings, and any human being has the right to have medical attention," she said.

Jackson County’s medical care for inmates has been called into question before.

Last January, Regina Thurman had chest pains.

“I spent an hour trying to get ahold of somebody," Thurman's daughter, Nicole Aguire, said. “They just gave her tums and told her to lay down and rest."

Her daughter says she had to call 911 but help came too late. Thurman died of a heart attack.

"I just don't know what to say. I'm baffled now," Aguire said.

Richard Degraffenreid died too.

"I’m numb. I’m heartbroken," his mother, Ruth Garrison, said.

Last summer, Degraffenreid was arrested for a parole violation. The jail reports he was combative. His family says he clearly needed medical help because he had overdosed drugs.

Instead, Degraffenreid was strapped to a chair and eventually rushed to the hospital. The family says the emergency room doctor told them he was brain dead on arrival. They lost the heartbeat

Ddegraffenreid’s family has joined other families and former inmates suing for inhumane treatment and cruel conditions.

Butler saw her son in court on Thursday. She says he simply looked terrible.

"I have been down to the jail. They didn’t even let me talk to anybody. I’d like to ask one of these how would you feel if your child was denied anything. How would that make you feel?" she said.

KCTV5 has been trying to help Butler and her son, but we can’t get good information. Everyone hides behind the shadow of medical privacy, and then we are told, overall, the jail provides appropriate medical care.

We decided to share what’s allegedly happening with Jackson because we realize it’s part of a troubling pattern that still needs to be fixed.

A jail audit was completed seven months ago. It called out scathing conditions and called the jail a major crisis. It is still unclear what will be down to resolve major problems.

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