First Prisoner Killed By Coronavirus Was Nonviolent Drug Offender
The first federal prisoner in the U.S. to die from the novel coronavirus was locked up on nonviolent drug charges.
The first federal prisoner in the U.S. to die from coronavirus was locked up on nonviolent drug charges, NBC News reports.
Patrick Jones, a 49-year-old inmate in a low-security penitentiary in Oakdale, Louisiana, was serving his 13th year of a 27-year prison sentence when he contracted the coronavirus and died. Jones was sentenced in 2009 on drug charges after police found 9 grams of crack and 21 grams of cocaine in his Temple, Texas home.
In the months before his death, Jones penned a letter to U.S. District Judge Alan Albright requesting a sentence reduction. “I feel that my conviction and sentence was also a punishment that my child has had to endure also and there are no words for how remorseful I am,” Jones wrote. “Years of ‘I am sorry’ don’t seem to justify the absence of a father or the chance of having purpose in life by raising my child.”
His request was denied on February 22 and he died from coronavirus twenty-two days later.