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In-custody deaths: Alameda County stands apart in lack of investigations

Hernan Jaramillo, Roy Nelson, James Greer, Kayla Moore, Mark Bennett and Martin Harrison all have tragedy in common: Each died since 2010 during scuffles with police in Alameda County.

But unlike similar incidents elsewhere in the Bay Area, none of the deaths was independently investigated by the district attorney. Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley does not automatically probe use-of-force deaths unless the decedent was shot by police.

Told by this news organization that her policy is at odds with peers, O’Malley expressed surprise and said she would consider a change. Currently, she said, her office simply follows an officer-involved shooting protocol agreed to by the county chiefs of police.