Family Says Atlanta Inmate Was ‘Eaten Alive’ By Bed Bugs: Lawsuit
A general view of Fulton County Jail building during "Masks For The People" Initiative at Fulton County Jail on July 10, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Paras Griffin/Getty Images

A Georgia family says their loved one died in an Atlanta jail last year after being “eaten alive” by bed bugs and other insects.

Lashawn Thompson, 35, was arrested on June 12, 2022, for a misdemeanor simply battery charge, CBS News reported Thursday. He was sent to Fulton County Jail and placed in the psychiatric wing because he had mental health issues.

Three months later, on September 19, Thompson “was found dead in a filthy jail cell after being eaten alive by insects and bed bugs,” family attorney Michael Harper said in a statement on Facebook (WARNING: disturbing images).

Harper included graphic images showing Thompson’s body covered in bugs and bites, along with images of the cell the family says Thompson was kept in. The family is requesting a criminal investigation into Thompson’s death.

Harper said in his Facebook post that jail records show that officials at the jail, as well as medical staff, “noticed that Mr. Thompson was deteriorating, but did nothing to administer aid to him or to help him.”

“They literally watched his health decline until he died,” Harper added. “When his body was found one of the detention officers refused to administer CPR because in her words she ‘freaked out.’”

First responders attempted to save Thompson’s life, but were unable, USA Today reported.

Harper described the cell in which Thompson was kept as “not fit for a diseased animal.”

“He did not deserve this. Someone has to be held accountable for his death,” Harper continued.


As CBS reported, this is not the first time Fulton County Jail has been accused of mistreating inmates. Last year, Fulton County Sheriff Patrick Labat raised his own concerns about overcrowding and a lack of funding for the prison.

“You have 3,500-plus points of data that show the dangers of where we are and the crisis that we’re in,” Labat said at the time.

Labat explained how there were 3,600 inmates in the jail after 1,400 were added in the previous two years. He added that 428 inmates were sleeping on the floor because there weren’t enough beds. Bob Ellis, a city commissioner, called the situation a “humanitarian crisis.”

Labat made his remarks during a meeting with the Fulton County Commission. After he spoke, the commission renewed a $27 million contract for physical and mental health services for inmates at the jail. Labat also requested an additional $6 million for additional issues, including employee retention and overtime, CBS reported.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Family Says Atlanta Inmate Was ‘Eaten Alive’ By Bed Bugs: Lawsuit