• 46°

16 inmates die in Mississippi prison system in August

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Sixteen inmates died in the Mississippi prison system in August.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections says on its website that 55-year-old Richard Beasley died Friday at a hospital in Greenville. He had been taken there from the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.

Beasley was serving 28 years for burglary-larceny. He was sentenced in November 2012 in Lee County.

Corrections Commissioner Pelicia Hall said Friday she was asking the FBI and the state Department of Public Safety to examine inmate deaths that happened in August. Hall said, though, that she believes most of the deaths were from natural causes, including cancer and heart disease.

Gov. Phil Bryant said last week that inmates who die “are just as important as anyone else in the state of Mississippi whose lives have been lost.”