TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Secretary of the High Council for Human Rights, Kazem Gharibabadi, has criticized the United States for the “appalling instance of jail abuse.”
Gharibabadi, made the remark in a post on his Twitter account, in response to reports that an Alabama man named Anthony Mitchell froze to death inside a county jail after being allegedly placed inside a walk-in freezer or another cold area by guards.
“In yet another appalling instance of jail abuse in the U.S., a man froze to death after being restrained in a freezer! And the fact that no human rights mechanisms dare to pose a question, or unmask the depth of the matter is just terrifying!,” said Gharibabadi.
On January 12, Mitchell, who had a history of mental health problems and drug addiction, was arrested for attempted murder after allegedly threatening to harm himself and others. He was then transported to Walker County Jail.
Two weeks later, on January 26, he died at a local hospital after he was taken there for evaluation and, according to a statement by the sheriff’s office, “became unresponsive at the hospital, where he was pronounced deceased.”
According to leaked CCTV footage, Mitchell was taken to the hospital after “hours of neglect,” including being locked inside the jail’s kitchen’s walk-in freezer as punishment.
The family has filed a lawsuit against the sheriff’s office, alleging Mitchell’s rights were violated, and protesters are demanding answers.
Mitchell’s former classmate, Austin Banks, described the circumstances leading to his ex-classmate as “almost barbaric.”
“How does America, in 2023, how does a prisoner… die of hypothermia?” he said.