Inmate's Case Highlights Medical Parole Issues

Donald Rash is 62 and an inmate at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice's Powledge Unit in Palestine, serving 23 years for a 1999 robbery. He suffers from severe spinal disorders, diabetes, chronic chest pain, hypertension, post-traumatic stress disorder and hepatitis C.

He can’t stand without crutches, and his lawyer said he regularly misses meals because he can't walk to the prison cafeteria. 

“He can barely hold up his head,” said attorney Michelle Smith of the Texas Civil Rights Project, who has visited Rash. “He’s a shell of a man.”

Despite his afflictions, Rash's ...

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