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Man convicted in 2018 murder of wife dies while in custody at Metro Corrections

Bashar Ghazawi was awaiting his sentencing phase when Metro Corrections staff said he was found unconscious Monday night.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Metro Corrections said an inmate that had been house at their facility on a murder conviction has died at the facility.

According to jail officials, Bashar Ghazawi who was housed at the facility since 2018, was found unconscious around 7 p.m. Monday.

Jail staff conducted life-saving measures on Ghazawi and emergency medical services were then called.

He was transported to UofL Hospital where he died a short time later.

Metro Corrections believes Ghazawi’s death is drug overdose related.

“I am disgusted that it seems another person has lost his life because of those who seek to profit by smuggling these dangerous substances into the Louisville Metro Department of Corrections. We will continue to work hard every day to disrupt the drug trafficking that plagues our community and our jail,” LMDC Director Jerry Collins said.

Ghazawi was awaiting the penalty phase of his trial when his death occurred.

He was convicted Monday for the July 2018 shooting death of his wife in the 4100 block of Lambert Avenue.

Collins has initiated an internal investigation by the Metro Corrections Professional Standards Unit and Metro Police’s Public Integrity Unit is also investigating.

In total, there have been 12 deaths at the facility since Nov. 2021.

Major Darrell Goodlett has released a statement in response to the ACLU's press conference. 

The Louisville Metro Department of Corrections is committed to working with vendors who will provide the best possible services to the population we are responsible for. Considering recent deaths at Metro Corrections, we understand the ACLU's concerns with the contract for medical and mental health services that Metro Corrections has with Wellpath. Like all vendors, Wellpath's ability to meet the needs of the incarcerated population is reviewed regularly. Director Collins is working closely with community stakeholders and Wellpath to provide healthcare and mental health services that are designed to meet the changing needs of people in our care. Special attention is being given to the areas of mental health services and substance use disorder. For the first time in several years, both a psychiatric nurse practitioner and a psychiatrist both see patients at LMDC. Also, Metro Corrections, Wellpath, and the MORE Center have partnered to provide medication assisted treatment to those who suffer from opioid use disorder. Director Collins meets regularly with community stakeholders, including the ACLU, and is looking forward to a continued dialogue.

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