Jail inmate gets $1 million worth of medical care for eating metal
CHICAGO — An inmate is costing the Cook County Jail more than $1 million in medical bills.
17-year-old Lamont Cathey has been in jail for 16 months since he was arrested for robbing a pizzeria.
Bond was set at $5,000, but no one has paid it.
A plea deal was in place to put Cathey in boot camp, but that fell through.
Since then he has been swallowing metal objects that have put him in the hospital.
They include screws, needles, a thumbtack, strips of leather, and parts of a medical device.
Cathey has needed multiple operations to remove those things from his body.
His lawyers say he needs long-term psychiatric treatment.
“This case to me is a perfect example of the failure of the criminal justice system,’ the jail`s executive director, Cara Smith, told the Chicago Tribune. “It`s been a crushingly sad and very frustrating case.’