Video: Hear Christopher Lopez's jailers joke and laugh while he slowly dies

Categories: News, Prison Life

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Christopher Lopez during some of his final moments. Warning: The video and photos below may disturb some readers.
Update: Last week, we told you about a lawsuit accusing Colorado Department of Corrections personnel with allowing mentally ill inmate Christopher Lopez to die while they watched; see our previous coverage below.

Now, attorney David Lane has released a 47 minute video that compiles shocking footage from Lopez's final hours. Be warned that some readers may find the images disturbing.

Lane's office has released a slew of family snapshots featuring Lopez as a way of emphasizing that he was a real person with real loved ones, as opposed to a mere statistic. Here are pics of him as an infant....

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...an older child....

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...and a young father.

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Despite these happy photos, Lopez lived a troubled life marked by mental illness and incarceration. He's said to have been diagnosed as a schizophrenic after a 2005 incident while in Weld County jail during which he believed he was Jesus Christ. By 2007, he'd earned a two-year prison sentence for assault that was extended by an additional four years after he assaulted a corrections officer.

While in stir at the San Carlos Correctional Facility in Pueblo, Lopez had periods during which he was capable of artistic expression, as seen in these illustrations created for his mom:

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But on March 15, 2013, he suffered a health crisis triggered by a sodium deficiency -- a possible reaction to the psychotropic medication he was taking.

The fatal progression of Lopez's deterioration and death is detailed in our original post and the aforementioned lawsuit, seen below in its entirety. But it's graphically depicted in the video, which makes for harrowing viewing.

One key sequence takes place around the 40:45 minute mark, when Lopez is lying shackled and semi-conscious on concrete flooring near a toilet.

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Christopher Lopez on the bathroom floor.
In the sequence, a female supervisor can be heard arriving and greeting correctional officers on duty.

"What's he doing now?" she asks

"Smells like he peed all over the place," a man replies.

A few seconds later, the supervisor introduces herself to Lopez and asks, "What are you doing? What are you doing? Why are you doing this? I can see you breathing. What's wrong? Open your eyes."

Lopez manages to perform this last task, but barely -- and that seems to satisfy those watching him. The conversation continues like so:

"Is he still on the floor?"

"Yeah."

"He likes it on the floor."

"I like him on the floor."

"Yeah, he likes it alright when he's on the floor."

This line prompts a laugh, after which the supervisor remarks, "Isn't that terrible?"

That's one way of putting it. Here's the video, followed by our previous coverage.

Continue for more about the Christopher Lopez lawsuit, including more photos and the complete document.


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269 comments
nans11
nans11

Talk about ignorance!!!!  They couldn't see that this man needed medical attention?  My 10 year old Granddaughter would realize that!  They murdered this man!

rousefred
rousefred

Have any of these people been charged with anything?

Avery Bills
Avery Bills

I don't think I've ever been so angry...

Ruby Rios
Ruby Rios

Regardless of how dangerous he could have been, he should of received help since the very beggining, Sick how all those cops and nurses just watched him suffer nd slowly die for all that time! They all deserve to get punished!

Andrew Jones
Andrew Jones

The "human being" qualifier in my comment serves to point out that it's a foregone conclusion that only a cartoonish villain or a psychopath in training or more would neglect a rabbit, horse, dog, you get the picture, slowly dying in its piss.

Andrew Jones
Andrew Jones

You can tell how much this resonates by how little trolling and hatred is being spewed in the comments. Someone said "a society can best be judged by how it treats its prisoners" and another dude said "what you do to the least of my brothers, you do unto me." No human being deserved to be neglected to death so callously let alone this mentally ill patient living in the abject terror of being in a constant struggle with your concept of reality and self. The corollary to the quotes above is "take a look at countries that deliberately mistreat prisons and the mentally ill and I will show you a place you never want to live."

lalala65628
lalala65628

as someone who has been in jail i know from experience that jailers dont give a shit about anything. they are fat worthless bastards who will take their sweet time to get medical in if you are having problems. i have had to yell at them to help somene else. I hate all of them equally.

Benjamin Howard Brockway
Benjamin Howard Brockway

Over 40% of married cops abuse their spouse. Not all are corrupt, but the majority are pieces of shit. You should encourage your husband to quit the mob

Charles Cusumano
Charles Cusumano

Comment from an emergency medicine physician assistant: had blood around nose and mouth; hyperventilating: suspect he had seizure in bunk, fell off hitting face and head on floor: may then have had a brain bleed. Clearly seizing in status way. Just a best guess based on what I saw on vid. Of course there are other possibilities but allowing untrained medical people to decide that he was willfully not cooperating is very bad.

Cathey Shaw
Cathey Shaw

As a nurse it was clear he was seizing the entire time . This could have prevented . They knew it and could have cared less , it was just one inmate they wanted gone , God knows what was in that injection , as a Coloradan I'm ashamed

Freddie Muniz
Freddie Muniz

And this is how they Continue to protect and serve!!!!! What a joke!

Laura Mooney
Laura Mooney

This is so sad, disturbing and utterly reprehensible.

Kendra Bell
Kendra Bell

NOT SHOCKING, but extremely disturbing! Sick. Police brutality is so common, it just doesn't shock me at all. Pure evil.

Steve Gitz
Steve Gitz

The cops should be fired but nobody should be getting rich from the poor taxpayers. They're lucky to be rid of him.

Edward Martin
Edward Martin

Pathetic. You would not watch an animal go through this and do nothing but you will watch a human being die? I watched the whole video and would have called 911 early on. You all should be ashamed but that won't bring him back.

Amannda Marie
Amannda Marie

This is so sad and disturbing. My condolences to the family.

Johanna Lorraine
Johanna Lorraine

I could only make it in less then 15 minutes. My heart hurts for Lopez and his family! Every one on those, so what they call them selves, officers. Should be held accountable for this. Shame on you Colorado. The first official time I have looked down on Colorado. And that hurts. Fucking assholes!! I can't believe they took video. AHH!!

Jeffery Joiner
Jeffery Joiner

How fucking long did he lay there gasping for his last breath. I couldn't imagine that feeling while assholes stand by and make jokes. Of course these fuckers won't be charged will they. Burn in hell pigs. I only hope that one day you lay shackled gasping for your last breath.

Rebecca Whitmore
Rebecca Whitmore

This is a major reason I don't work in corrections anymore

Chelsea DeWitt
Chelsea DeWitt

Unprofessional law enforcement and nurse staff. A life is worth saving, criminal or not. I'm disgusted

anthonycostantino131
anthonycostantino131

Just as some background, our nation no longer has enough strength to involuntarily commit someone and force them to take their medication. In the 70s, the ACLU, among other groups, began to challenge the govt's right to force individuals to accept treatment for mental illness, so the govt passed the Lanterman Petris Short Act which gave much more freedom and self-determination to mentally ill individuals. You can no longer force them to do anything unless it's a truly grave, temporary situation, so now they go in and out of jails to get their treatment, then fall off the wagon and repeat the cycle.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lanterman%E2%80%93Petris%E2%80%93Short_Act

Ellen Ross Dean
Ellen Ross Dean

It's horrible how this country treats people with mental health issues.

Randall William
Randall William

It's sad how fucked up people treat people. He may have been a criminal. But he needed help. And they did nothing to help him! I hope cdoc losses the court battle.

Deborah Watts
Deborah Watts

Oh they laughed and tormented her for about 5 hours. Horifically inhumane and evil. How can we pay people tax dollars to act like this?

Deborah Watts
Deborah Watts

I watched Mazzotti and other City of Denver Sheriff TORMENT a mentally handicapped inmate. To the point she was in a rage hitting her head on the door window that she bloodied.

Diana Hudson
Diana Hudson

This is horrible. Prisons need to be accountable for their actions

Guadalupe Gutierrez
Guadalupe Gutierrez

By far the most saddest thing ever I cannot believe this is what is happening in our jails these people are put away for their safety and ours I cannot believe my fellow Coloradans would be so remorseless against another fellow human being RIP CHRISTOPHER LOPEZ

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