Indiana prosecutor says no charges filed in death of Jackson County inmate

A Jackson County, Ind. prosecutor said there will be no charges in the death of Joshua...
A Jackson County, Ind. prosecutor said there will be no charges in the death of Joshua McLemore, a Jackson County inmate who died while in custody in August 2021.(WAVE News)
Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 8:13 PM EDT

BROWNSTOWN, Ind. (WAVE) - A Jackson County, Ind. prosecutor said there will be no charges in the death of a Jackson County inmate who died while in custody in August 2021.

Joshua McLemore was taken into custody for charges of battery against a public safety official and criminal mischief on July 20, 2021, according to court documents.

An Indiana State Police investigation revealed Seymour Police officers responded to McLemore’s apartment in Jackson County around 1 a.m. that night after calls were made out of concern.

Officers found McLemore naked and incoherent, the document states. Officers took McLemore to Schneck Medical Center for evaluation, where McLemore is said to have assaulted one of the nurses treating him.

Police arrested McLemore at Schneck Medical Center, where officers said he was “acting erratic,” according to the report.

On August 8, 2021, McLemore was taken back to Schneck Medical Center when staff became concerned for his health. McLemore was incarcerated for 20 days, where he remained naked during his time in jail due to his inability to dress himself and staff’s inability to dress him in a jail smock, documents state.

According to police, McLemore’s behavior was “very erratic,” and he rarely slept, ate or drank during his incarceration. Video review showed McLemore only slept around 15 hours of his 480-hour incarceration, and moved less during his last days before being taken to the hospital.

Police said despite McLemore being served three meals a day, he ate and drank very little, often dumping food and spilling drinks on his cell floor.

On Aug. 8, staff became aware that McLemore was not doing well and requested an ambulance to take him to the hospital. He was later taken from Schneck Medical Center to Mercy West Hospital in Cincinnati on Aug. 9.

McLemore died on Aug. 10, according to documents. The coroner said McLemore’s cause of death was multiple organ failure, refusal to eat or drink with altered mental status and unrelated schizophrenia.

His manner of death was ruled as natural.

According to the Jackson County Prosecutor and Indiana State Police, investigation showed no evidence of a “knowing, intentional or reckless act” that led to McLemore’s death.

The investigation determined that no single person committed an act that constituted as a crime, with McLemore’s death due to prolonged lack of attention by Jackson County Jail as a group.

Jackson County Prosecutor Jeff Chalfant said civil charges could be still be filed against the Jackson County Jail as criminal charges would not be filed in McLemore’s death.

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WAVE — Louisville and Southern Indiana's NBC affiliate. Follow us on Twitter & Instagram @wave3news.(WAVE)

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