Utah Jail Deaths Weber

April 20, 2017

Investigating jail deaths in Northern Utah

Utah has the most jail deaths per capita in the nation,
according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Weber and Davis counties are among the worst in the state, outstripping even more populous Salt Lake County in death rates, data gathered by the Standard-Examiner shows. The following story archive is the first part of a yearlong effort by the Standard-Examiner to report on the people behind the mugshots and how they died.

Stories by jail

Scroll down to read more about this issue, or select a button below to filter our coverage by jail.

Family still has questions about homeless man's December death in Weber jail
Friday, April 28, 2017

OGDEN — Isaura Martinez wonders why her son didn’t call. “My son always talked to me and told me everything, good or bad things.” Martinez said Wednesday, April 26.


Brother: Mentally ill man 'snapped' in Weber jail, harmed himself
Tuesday, April 18, 2017

OGDEN — A Disability Law Center attorney on Monday, April 17, challenged assertions that a jail inmate who died after a paralyzing fall had been faking mental illness.

Homeless man died in Weber jail in late 2016 - 23rd in-custody death since 2009
Friday, April 14, 2017

OGDEN — On Dec. 4, 2016, Jesus Gomez-Martinez walked into traffic on Wall Avenue after telling staff at the Lantern House homeless shelter that he was going to kill himself.

Ogden inmate not given IV, died of dehydration in Weber jail, attorney says
Sunday, February 19, 2017

OGDEN — Supporting a $300-a-day heroin habit got too expensive for Marion Herrera. Police arrested the 40-year-old Ogden woman on a check forgery allegation, and she died 3 ½ days later while withdrawing from the street drug in the Weber County Jail.

Investigator: No mistreatment or unfair prosecution against Matthew Stewart
Friday, March 28, 2014

OGDEN — An independent review has concluded there were no indications of mistreatment by jail staff or unduly biased adjudication against Matthew David Stewart leading up to the murder suspect’s May 24, 2013 suicide by hanging.

Timeline: The last days of Bosnian immigrant Amra Miletic
Monday, July 11, 2016

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security investigated the death of immigration detainee Amra Miletic, 47, who died March 20, 2011 after a 47-day stay at the Weber County Jail.

Man who admitted to killing a woman found dead in his cell
Tuesday, June 23, 2015

OGDEN --- The attorney for the man accused of murdering a Washington Terrace woman for money said he is not shocked to hear about his client’s death in jail.

Father to Weber County Commission: Jail failed Stewart, is inhumane
Thursday, March 6, 2014

OGDEN — Matthew David Stewart’s father told the Weber County Commission on Tuesday that the jail failed to protect his son and ignored his complaints about conditions, leading to the murder suspect’s death by hanging May 24.

Man suspected of faking mental illness in Weber jail before paralysis, death
Thursday, April 13, 2017

OGDEN — Matthew Ryan Hall, who was paralyzed after falling in a Weber County Jail cell, refused to take medication or participate in mental illness treatment prior to injuring himself, court records say.

Weber County jail report details some medical actions hours before fatality
Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Standard-Examiner received documents related to the investigation of Marion Herrera’s death through a Government Records Access Management Act (GRAMA) request. 

Claim filed over woman's death in Weber County Jail
Wednesday, August 17, 2016

OGDEN — An attorney has filed notice of intent to sue Weber County over the death of a 40-year-old jail inmate who sheriff’s officials said was in heroin withdrawal.

Woman found dead in Weber County Jail; internal investigation ongoing
Thursday, June 16, 2016

OGDEN — Deputies are investigating after a woman booked into the Weber County Jail was found dead last month. Marion Herrera, 41, was booked into the Weber County Jail on May 18 on suspicion of forgery and theft, Weber County Sheriff’s Lt. Lane Findlay said.

Immigrant's death puts agencies at odds over Weber jail's medical care handling
Monday, July 11, 2016

OGDEN — Bosnian Amra Miletic was one of the last immigration detainees to be housed in the Weber County Jail. Miletic died in a holding cell March 20, 2011. “You people don’t know what you are doing,” she had told a nurse two days earlier. Less than an hour before she died, she grabbed a nurse’s hand and said, “I’m dying.”

Ogden murder suspect found dead in jail cell
Tuesday, March 18, 2014

OGDEN— Jeffrey Dean White, 43, charged with murdering his girlfriend, was found dead late Wednesday night in his cell at the Weber County Jail.

Another suicide at Weber jail makes 3 in 3 months
Tuesday, March 6, 2014

OGDEN — A recent suicide at the Weber County Jail is the third in three months, sheriff’s officials confirmed this week.

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Newsroom main: (801) 625-4225 • cityed@standard.net
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Mark Shenefelt and Nadia Pflaum directly at:

Stories on jail policies

Deaths in Utah's county jails support advocates' zero fatalities goal
Sunday, July 24, 2016

Utah’s county jails have elaborate policies aimed at safeguarding sick or suicidal inmates, but a spate of deaths has fostered concerns about a shaky safety net for those who go behind bars.

Jail deaths trigger levels of investigative machinery
Wednesday, July 27, 2016

When someone dies behind bars in Utah, multiple investigations quickly begin. But if the inmate’s passing appears to be medically related, there’s usually no public announcement or news coverage.

New avenues sought for drug detox in Utah jails
Sunday, August 28, 2016

OGDEN — Substance abuse treatment professionals are chipping away at practices in Utah jails they say can force inmates to endure painful and dangerous cold-turkey withdrawals from narcotics addictions.

Suicide Watch: Jails work to help inmates, prevent casualties
Wednesday, June 24, 2015

OGDEN -- Sandy Grattan continues to mourn her brother who died on June 8, 2014 by hanging himself in the Weber County Jail, just a few hours after being booked in.

Utah judge OKs lawsuit over delayed defendant treatment, hospital crowding
Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s system of handling mentally ill criminal defendants appears to be failing, a federal judge said in allowing a civil rights lawsuit to proceed against the state.