TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A warden and two of his assistants were fired because the investigation of an inmate who died in a scalding shower was taking too long, prison officials said Thursday.
Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Mike Crews visited Dade Correctional Institution last week as part of an investigation into the death of Darren Rainey, a mentally ill prisoner who was punished in 2012 with a shower so hot that his skin separated from his body.
"I have not been satisfied with the information flow from Dade C.I., and we need leaders there who will act with urgency to protect the safety of the inmates and staff, and hold individuals accountable when needed," Crews said in a news release.
The secretary said he was further upset after learning that he wasn't told that a Dade prisoner had died shortly before his visit. The death was apparently from natural causes.
Crews said he was working with the Miami-Dade Police Department to complete a full investigation of Rainey's death.
"This investigation has taken too long, and it is time to get the facts so we can take any additional action that may be necessary," Crews said.
The American Civil Liberties Union, Amnesty International and other human rights groups recently called for a federal investigation.
The former warden, Jerry Cummings, had been on administrative leave since Crews visited the facility last week. His termination was announced Thursday, along with his replacement, Les Odom.
Cummings' phone number was not listed. His assistant warden and another prison leader were also replaced.