"This Just In" piece reporting that Ryan Rideout, a 25-year-old inmate, killed h
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- Maine State Prison Warren; Supermax; Prisoners Abuse of
"This Just In" piece reporting that Ryan Rideout, a 25-year-old inmate, killed himself in the state's Supermax prison on October 5. Rideout had a long history of mental illness and suicidal behavior. The Department of Corrections has admitted problems in, and promised reforms to, the Maine State Prison's solitary-confinement Supermax unit, which contains many mentally ill prisoners. Denise Lord, associate commissioner of the corrections department, says that one reform already instituted is the placement of high-risk, mentally challenging prisoners in a new pod of cells, but Rideout was placed in the lowest-security level within the Supermax. Ray Luc Levasseur, a political activist who spent years in federal supermaxes, says the sensory deprivation and isolation of these units intensifies any mental health issues the prisoners have.