Some inmates at the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women were facing a chilly night on December 26, as the heat in part of the facility appeared inoperable Monday, according to the husband of an inmate.
“They’ve been without heat all day in the medical building,” said Timothy Lohr of Harrisonburg. “As the sun goes down, you know it’s gonna get colder.”
A Department of Corrections spokesperson, contacted around sunset Monday, promptly sent over a set of nine indoor air temperatures readings from the medical building showing that the coldest one measured just a fraction under 66 degrees.
Lohr, however, contends that many people with medical issues will feel colder than other inmates.
“People should be called in to help keep these people warm,” Lohr said.
The correctional center was opened in 1998 and has had prior troubles in its medical facility. In 2016, a federal judge approved a settlement in a class action lawsuit waged by the Charlottesville-based Legal Aid Justice Center calling on the prison to improve its medical care.
For Lohr, hearing about heat failure on a night where low temperatures are predicted to drop to around 20 degrees Fahrenheit is concerning. He says his wife, who is 51, suffers from multiple myeloma, a type of bone cancer.
“I feel like something could have been done not only for her but also for the rest of the inmates,” said Lohr.