July 16, 2022, marks one year since Ta’Naesha Chappell passed away following severe medical neglect at the Jackson County Jail (Indiana). Jail video shows Ms. Chappell spent hours crying out for help while she vomited blood, moaned in pain, and collapsed more than four times during a 24-hour period. She was mocked by staff members and accused of faking illness. The Jackson County Jail and its staff members ignored her cries for help and failed to render timely aid and get the medical attention that Ta’Neasha desperately and obviously needed.
The Jackson County Jail is but one government agency that grossly failed Ta’Neasha Chappell. Jackson County prosecutors declined to bring criminal neglect charges against jail staff. In a formal letter declining to indict, Jackson County Prosecutor Jeffrey Chalant made multiple inaccurate statements and failed to address critical evidence. Ta’Neasha, and other victims of jail mistreatment, deserve dignity and justice. Communities must demand answers.
Ta’Neasha’s death has understandably sparked anger and outrage. Jackson County Jail has a long history of inmate mistreatment, including unsafe and unclean living conditions, excessive force by staff, and failure to render appropriate, timely medical care. Jails across the nation are in crisis with inadequate funding and inmate neglect and abuse. Inmates are human beings and deserve to be treated with dignity and humanity. Ta’Neasha’s mother, Lavita McClain, is seeking further investigation into her daughter’s cause of death. She and her family have organized rallies and protests and are using social media to raise awareness and to seek justice for Ta’Neasha and other incarceration victims. They will not rest until truth and justice prevail. Please help the Chappell family fight for justice by visiting www.justicefortanesha.com and by signing the petition at change.org.
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