Ex-corrections officer speaks out about inmate suicide
Could anything have been done to prevent the suicide of confessed serial killer Israel Keyes?
By Kate McPherson
ANCHORAGE — Could anything have been done to prevent the suicide of confessed serial killer Israel Keyes?
Former correctional officer Loren Jacobsen says yes: He’s got plenty of suggestions. He even questioned some of the Department of Corrections’ procedures while Israel Keyes was still alive.
But Jacobsen couldn’t prevent Keyes’ death. In fact, he was fired over it and the matter went to arbitration.
The DOC claims Jacobsen was talking with coworkers, reading a book and using the Internet when Keyes “managed to tie a noose around his neck and cut his wrist,” in December 2012, according to documents presented during the arbitration.
But Jacobsen and the Alaska Correctional Officers Association have a different account of events.
“We look at the video and find out that when the event happened, I’m on break,” Jacobsen said.
The arbitrator’s review of the record showed Jacobsen took his mandatory break at 10:05 p.m. December 1, 2012 and was relieved by another officer. At 10:12 p.m., video surveillance shows Keyes getting into the bed where the suicide took place and moving around until 10:24 p.m. Keyes doesn’t appear to move again after that. Jacobsen returned from his break at 10:52 p.m.
Jacobsen was exonerated but says the DOC could have done more to prevent the suicide, beginning with a better choice of cell.