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Family claims ill inmate died because of Denver jail staff negligence

The family of a 71-year-old man who died after becoming ill while serving a sentence at the Downtown Detention Center says jail staff were negligent and could’ve done more to prevent his death.

Leroy “Nicky” Henry Taylor was sentenced to 30 days in jail for failing to appear in court, according to Jacquelyn Richardson and Sandra Manlove, Taylor’s first cousin and sister, respectively. His sentence began Jan. 19 and was supposed to end Feb. 23.

On Feb. 1, Manlove says she received a call from Taylor at Denver Health, where he had been taken because he had been diagnosed with COVID-19. He returned to jail five days later after testing negative, and his family claims his health quickly deteriorated.

“Once he was released, he called Sandy and said he was very sick. He said he was having excruciating pain in his chest. She said, ‘How bad is the pain? Can you give it a number?’ He said, ’20,'” Richardson said.

In addition to the chest pain, the family says Taylor reported having trouble swallowing, numb fingers and gray-colored limbs.

“I told them, ‘You guys need to do something. He’s complaining about chest pains. He’s complaining about not being able to swallow. You’re giving him ice chips,'” Manlove recalled telling jail staff.

But despite multiple pleas for help, the family says Taylor never got the treatment he needed from the jail’s infirmary.

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