How many times have we heard this? He/She got what was coming to them.
When it comes to police, corrections officers and other members of law enforcement, even death is becoming an acceptable form of punishment. Because…well just because. Maybe they had it coming.
Who makes that call by the way? You know, a death sentence? Is it law enforcement when you are in their custody? And what exactly does one have to do in order to receive this death sentence at the hands of law enforcement?
Follow below for more.
Christopher Lopez died at the San Carlos Correctional Facility, Pueblo, Colorado March 17, 2013. Mr. Lopez was 35.
So what exactly did Christopher Lopez do to warrant a death sentence during his incarceration? Maybe Christopher Lopez killed a guard? Nope didn’t kill a guard. Maybe he attacked another guard with deadly force and they had to kill him to save their lives? No, not that either. Perhaps Christopher Lopez was attacking another inmate with such violent force that he had to be put down with that same and equal force and killed him? No, that’s not it either.
Christopher Lopez was on medication for Schizophrenia and was initially discovered at 3:30am laying on a cold concrete cell floor passed out and unable to respond to commands. That and that alone was the reason he was sentenced to death. According to a lawsuit that has been filed by the family and an autopsy, Mr. Lopez’s cause of death was severe hyponatremia, a condition that occurs when sodium levels are too low.
From Denver Westword blog, attorney David Lane who is representing the family says this… "The first video shows Christopher Lopez lying face down on the floor of his cell, naked from the waist up, and the staff is yelling in the cuff slot" -- the slot in the cell door through which prisoners can extend their hands in order to be handcuffed. "They're saying, 'Come to the slot and cuff up or we're not going to help you with your medical issue.' But you can see Lopez is virtually unconscious. He's trying to lift his head but he's not strong enough to do it.While in the restraint chair, Christopher Lopez suffers a Grand Mal seizure. Meanwhile Correctional personnel make jokes and make small-talk about Wal Mart and what they are going to be doing on Saturday night.
"Then they gear up the force team" -- personnel assigned to forcibly extract an inmate from his cell -- "and go in. But first, they talk about pepper-spraying him because he's not complying with their demands, even though some low-level guard says he has a medical issue. The only reason they don't pepper-spray him is because they're short-staffed.
"Their reports about this are all part of the cover up," Lane contends. "They say, 'He disobeyed our order' to make it seem like he was obstreperous when he was actually almost unconscious."
Once inside the cell, Lane continues, staffers "put Lopez in a restraint chair with a belly chain and his wrists shackled to the belly chain, and put a spit hood over him even though he wasn't doing anything.
"If he was disobeying their orders, it was because he was 95 percent dead at this point."
Then when Christopher Lopez was slumped over and damn near dead, they take him out of the restraint chair and throw his almost lifeless body back into the cell. From the photographs taken from the video, Mr. Lopez is seen laying with his head next to the toilet still shackled and with nothing on but his boxer shorts.
Evidently, from time to time the personnel yell through his cell door as he still lays there and ask “If he is ready to cooperate yet?” Christopher Lopez is not cooperating, because he is dying.
Later a Nurse enters the cell, "She says, 'It's time for your psych meds.' Christopher doesn’t respond, so they say, 'Fine,' and give him a forcible injection into his butt of his psych meds." It just so happens that the medicine they inject him with is most likely the cause of his low sodium levels.
And there he lays for another couple of hours, almost naked on a cold concrete cell, barely breathing, until he finally grabs his last breath and dies.
But they don’t even notice that. Another 20 minutes passes and someone notices that he may not be breathing and decide to check. They start to perform CPR, but it is too late. Christopher Lopez has been dead for a while. Then when EMT’s arrive the correctional personnel turn off the video.
Complete and abject negligence on the part of personnel at the San Carlos Correctional Facility in Pueblo, Colorado. For six grueling hours they did nothing to help this man. Absolutely nothing. How do we know it was 6 hours? Because the family has filed a lawsuit and there is high quality video of the entire ordeal.
Christopher Lopez was guilty of being sick. Very sick. In fact Mr. Lopez’s condition was so acute, it killed him. Correction, the personnel at the San Carlos Correctional killed him. They allowed Christopher Lopez to die in a matter so horrific it defies any possible explanation.
Follow the links I have provided for more information, plus the lawsuit and hold onto to whatever sense of humanity you have, because this will certainly give challenge. It is gut wrenching beyond any description.
It has been said repeatedly that law enforcement personnel need to be held accountable for their actions. Lawsuits are fine, but we the citizens end up with the bill in the end and those who are guilty, get a slap on the wrist.
The last thing we need in this country is more people incarcerated. However, I make an exception to that. It is time that those we entrust to enforce our laws be held to a standard that at a minimum is equal to that we place upon ourselves. Truth be said, a higher standard by LEO of all stripes is in order. When and if we start to jail these criminals, we can say with a straight face…They had it coming.
Rest in peace Christopher Lopez.