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Courts and Crime

Castro suicide could be connected to understaffing
Despite inmate population growth in Ohio, the officers watching them continue to be reassigned or cut

Andy Chow
Chris Mabe, president of the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association, fears that the correctional staff may be blamed for Castro's suicide.
Courtesy of Ohio Civil Service Employees Association
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The head of the union representing Ohio’s prison staff says inmate violence and suicides, like the one committed by Ariel Castro, will keep happening if the state’s prisons continue to go understaffed.

Chris Mabe is the president of the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association. He says while Ohio inmate population is growing the officers guarding them continue to be reassigned or cut. The state is conducting an investigation into Castro’s death and Mabe fears the result could make the correctional staff a scapegoat.

LISTEN: Chris Mabe on prison resources

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“When issues like this happen that’s always a possibility—the first thing they go to is the correctional staff and try to find out—you know—what did we do wrong. Well it’s not a matter of ‘what did we do wrong’ it’s ‘what are we trying to do with the resources that we have.’”

Mabe says an increase in prison activity such as inmate violence and suicide can be directly attributed to the staffing level inside that facility.

Ariel Castro pleaded guilty to holding three women hostage in his Cleveland home for about 10 years. He was found dead in his prison cell on Tuesday.
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