Meck County failed to document supervision rounds before inmate’s death, health officials say

CHARLOTTE — Prior to the death of a Mecklenburg County Detention Center inmate, officers did not fulfill their requirement to document all supervision rounds, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

Earlier in March, the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office began its investigation in the death of 31-year-old Francine Laney in the uptown Charlotte jail.

The summary state of deficiencies says that the jail conducted only half of the supervision rounds in 10 instances between March 1 at 6 p.m. and March 2 at 6:55 p.m. while she was placed on direct observation watch twice an hour.

Deputies said they found Laney unresponsive in her cell in the jail’s infirmary at 6:20 p.m. on March 2. Deputies said they could not share what her health status was due to HIPAA.

A nurse called 911 and medical personnel started CPR and other lifesaving efforts, but she died just after 7 p.m., deputies said.

“Words can not express the devastation of losing a resident so soon after the shooting involving one of our deputies and now the emotional trauma on staff,” Sheriff Garry McFadden said. “We are deeply saddened to report this death.”

Deputies said Laney was processed into custody on Jan. 30. They said she hadn’t made any phone calls and hadn’t received any legal or professional visits since that date.

Deputies said they tried several times to get in touch with her next-of-kin but were initially unsuccessful because Laney provided “limited contact information” during processing.

Laney’s name was released on March 3 after deputies were able to notify her family.

MCSO sent the following statement to Channel 9:

“MCSO has received a statement of deficiencies in response to NCDHHS’ compliance investigation conducted on March 16, 2022. MCSO has already begun a plan of correction which will be submitted to the Chief Jail Inspector by April 27, 2022. While we have begun a plan of correction, the in-custody death of Francine Laney is still under investigation by the State Bureau of Investigation. We must respect their process to keep the integrity of the investigation and ensure it is conducted impartially.”

The State Bureau of Investigation will investigate as the medical examiner determines her cause of death, according to deputies.

Check back with wsoctv.com for updates.

(WATCH BELOW: Meck sheriff hires private security company to help staffing shortages)