Woman allegedly forced to give birth alone in a dirty jail cell
Alarming surveillance footage captured the moment a pregnant inmate was forced to deliver her own baby entirely by herself on a bench in her Denver County Jail cell.
According to KDVR, Diana Sanchez, the inmate in question, is now suing the city and county of Denver, Denver Health Medical Center and an additional six individuals.
Based on court documents, the former inmate told Denver Sheriff Department deputies that she was in labour, but that she still received no medical supervision or treatment.
Take a look at the shocking footage:
The lawsuit states that nurses and sheriff’s deputies "callously made her labor alone for hours, and ultimately give birth in a dirty jail cell without any medical care," adding that they "cruelly chose convenience over compassion."
Sanchez's lawyer, Mari Newman, told KDVR: "The failure to provide care to a woman who is in labour and a baby who is born without any medical assistance in a dirty jail cell, this is not civilized."
In reference to the moment the nurse finally enters the cell, Newman stated: "[He] picks up the baby as though he’s never seen one in his life. I mean, the lack of any sort of compassion is astounding."
It is still unclear which crime Sanchez - who had been incarcerated for two weeks before giving birth - had been locked up for. It is also not known whether she was ultimately convicted or cleared of the crime.
Per KDVR, a spokesperson for the Denver Sheriff Department said: "The care and well-being of our inmates is a top priority for the Denver Sheriff's Department, which is why we contract with Denver Health to provide comprehensive medical care at both of our jails."
"After learning that Ms. Sanchez gave birth in a cell at the Denver County Jail on July 31, 2018, Sheriff [Patrick] Firman immediately ordered Internal Affairs to conduct a review to understand what happened. Denver Health was also asked to review this incident."
The spokesperson added that the investigation confirmed deputies had done nothing wrong.
Deputies "took the appropriate actions under the circumstances and followed the relevant policies and procedures," she said. "Policy has since been clarified that when an inmate is in labor, an emergency ambulance will be called."
Speaking to told KDVR in an interview last year, Sanchez spoke out about her ordeal:
"That pain was indescribable, and what hurts me more though is the fact that nobody cared. They put my son’s life at risk. When I got to the hospital, they said that I could have bled to death."