Inmate suicide points to ‘blind spot’ in procedures, sheriff says

Jan 10, 2023

Newly-inaugurated Sheriff Paul Heroux said the recent suicide at the Dartmouth jail likely reveals a “blind spot” in department procedures — something he said he intends to fix.

In an interview with the New Bedford Light, Heroux said that while the previous sheriff’s administration tended to respond to inmate suicides by saying that all the best procedures were followed, he’s not satisfied that is the case here. 

“I think we have a blind spot. It’s my job to find out what the blind spot is,” he said.

Heroux said two former colleagues from his time working in administration at the Massachusetts Department of Corrections, one a former commissioner, one a former superintendent of several prisons in the state system, were visiting the complex in North Dartmouth and the Ash Street Jail in New Bedford on Thursday and Friday. 

He said they talked about suicide prevention on Thursday, and spent more time on it on Friday, hours after the latest death. 

Click here to read The New Bedford Light story.