Marine veteran who committed suicide in state prison suffered severe mental health problems
December 10, 2018 08:50 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – KOB’s 4 Investigates team has learned more about one of the two men that committed suicide in a state prison last week.
Keith Kosirog was booked at the Quay County jail but due to his severe mental health problems he was transferred to the Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Los Lunas for ‘safe keeping.’
Keith’s brother, Ken Kosirog, remembers the image of his brother as a Marine who served his country honorably.
“By the time 9/11 hit, he was already in for about two years. So he did a tour over in Iraq and before he was discharged I know he did a tour over in Afghanistan and I believe he did a short stint in Haiti as well,” Ken said.
But like so many others who returned from the frontlines, Keith struggled to hold a job, fell into depression and was diagnosed with PTSD.
“From 2006 to present time, he was deteriorating,” Ken told 4 Investigates. “He started going through some financial difficulties and what happened was they gave him 100 percent disability.”
Ken is unclear as to how his brother ended up in legal trouble.
Attorney Matthew Coyte, an expert in solitary confinement, said anyone with a history of mental health issues should never be placed in isolation.
“The evidence is clear that isolation is toxic to the mentally ill. So somebody who is mentally ill and sent to the prison because the jail can't handle him for whatever reason and ends up isolation, they are going to get worse,” Coyte said. “It's so obvious that they are going to get worse. We must do something about it and stop these deaths.”
During the 2017 legislative session, Coyte and a handful of lawmakers worked to pass a bill that would have made it illegal to keep the mentally ill, pregnant women and children, out of solitary confinement cells.
Gov. Susana Martinez vetoed that bill.
“Nobody should go through this,” Ken said. “These guys don't have a second chance to make things right.”
Keith was one of two suicides that took place just one day apart from each other. The other inmate was Adonus Encias and his family believes his death was not a suicide.
New Mexico State police are investigating both deaths.
Stay with KOB 4 Investigates for updates.
Updated: December 10, 2018 08:50 PM
Created: December 10, 2018 07:45 PM
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