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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 July, 2005, 13:17 GMT 14:17 UK
Prison suicides among the worst
Prisons in Yorkshire have some of the worst suicide rates among inmates in the country in the past decade, new figures show.

The Howard League for Penal Reform found Leeds Prison at Armley had the second highest suicide rate with 25 inmates dying between 1995 and 2004.

During the same time, Doncaster Prison had 17 suicides, Hull Jail had 16 and New Hall Prison in Wakefield had 11.

The charity said its findings were a "shaming indictment" of the system.

Community sentences

Its report, which was published on Tuesday, found 804 people committed suicide in prison between 1995 to 2004.

And of those, 55% were on remand at the time.

The prison population stood at 76,266 on 1 July, according to the Prison Service.

Director of the Howard League charity Frances Crook said judges could not justify sending more people into overcrowded prisons when there were effective community sentences available.

"With the present level of overcrowding in our prisons, people are literally condemned to an early death, despite the best efforts of over-stretched prison staff," she said.


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