Updated: Aug 14, 2021
It is no secret that the U.S. Jail system is complete trash. Garbage. The news and media display the shortcoming of our justice system every day, sometimes in our backyards. The system perpetuates a cycle between Black and Brown citizens, convincing them that life is only worth live if it's behind bars. Though prison is meant for criminals, human rights are still just for each individual behind bars.
A pregnant mother in Gainesville, Florida, recently arrested for two active warrant charges of a felony violation of probation and failure to appear in court for a traffic charge, experienced the true hardships of being a mother within an unjust judicial system. Erica Thompson was placed in Alachua County jail on August 9th for her charges and informed the medical staff of her contractions though she was ignored. Thompson expressed to the nurses how she felt she was about to give birth.
"I'm screaming I'm going to have my baby, please get me out of here. I feel like I'm going to have my baby."
Alone in her cell, Thompson birthed a baby girl the same night of her booking.
"there was no medical help..."
After the birth, Thompson was taken to the local hospital with her daughter alive in her arms though she was only six months pregnant. But according to Thompson, the doctors told her that her child was "too small."
"They didn't even put her in an incubator. They just had her in the crib. They told me... 'we don't think we can save her, were not going to be able to do anything."
The new baby girl survived for hours before passing away, according to Thompson. She believes that with more medical care, her daughter would have survived. The sheriff's office in Alachua County has an ongoing investigation in regards to Thompson's case.
"our entire agency is very saddened by what Ms. Thompson had to experience. We absolutely realize how traumatizing and heartbreaking it is to lose a child, and we are deeply saddened, and we grieve with her in the loss of her child. We are confident that the investigation will be completed in its entirety, and it will be given a full review, and if there are any concerns, they will be addressed."
Thompson expressed her forced childbirth very vividly up until her last moments with her daughter.
"I basically held my baby all night, until she died, until she turned blue."
Protests have begun in the area for the demand of answers in Thompson's case.