Death Row Inmate Severes Penis; Judge Says He Must Receive Better Care

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A judge in Tennessee has ruled that the state must give better care to a death row inmate who was restrained after he cut off his penis.

A lawyer for Henry Hodges filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order on Friday.

It noted that Hodges severed his penis and was placed in a medical facility. However, when he was sent back to the prison, he was naked and in restraints, and was made to lay on a thin mattress over a concrete slab.

The judge refused to order Hodges to be released from restraints but did rule that the state must give him clothing, better care, and mental stimuli.

The complaint also stated that Hodges experiences psychotic episodes. On Oct.3, he began to put feces on the wall in his cell. Instead of giving him treatment for his mental health, prison officers started withholding food from him.

Then, on October 7, Hodges shattered a window in his cell and used a razor to cut his wrists. In the infirmary, he told officials that he needed to be on suicide watch. But, he was taken back to his cell, and an hour later, he cut his penis from his body with a razor blade.

Hodges was transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center where doctors were able to reattach his penis.

In 1990, Hodges was put on death row after a Nashville jury convicted him of murdering Ronald Bassett.



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