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County officials release few details on a holiday weekend death at the Allegheny County Jail

By July 8, 2021 No Comments

Details are scarce about the death of an incarcerated man at the Allegheny County Jail over the July 4 weekend. 

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s office identified Martin Bucek, 55, as the county jail resident who died July 3.  He was found unresponsive in a single cell at the jail,  according to an email sent to the Jail Oversight Board (JOB) by President Judge Kimberly Berkeley Clark, who serves as chair of the board. Sources provided the email to the Pittsburgh Institute for Nonprofit Journalism (PINJ) yesterday.

An incarcerated individual contacted a PINJ reporter to notify them that someone had died within the jail and expressed concern that  the death was going unreported.

According to an email from the medical examiner, Bucek was transferred to UPMC Mercy Hospital and lists that location as his place of death. However, in an email Wednesday to the jail oversight board, Clark wrote, “A resident was found unresponsive in his cell and paramedics were called.  Both staff and paramedics performed CPR without success.” 

No manner or cause of death has been reported by the county or medical examiner. 

According to court records, Bucek was arrested at St. Clair Hospital on June 23. He was later taken to the ACJ. 

Allegheny County Councilmember Bethany Hallam, a member of the JOB, expressed concerns about Bucek’s death. 

Study after study shows that jails are the most dangerous days after someone is booked. Regardless of how he lost his life, he was just brought there and he is no longer alive,” Hallam said. They had a moral obligation to protect him.” 

Read full story on Busek’s death at the Pittsburgh Institute of Nonprofit Journalsim here.

Brittany Hailer can be reached at

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