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Articles by Pooja Salhotra, The Texas Tribune

Pooja Salhotra joined the Tribune in 2022 as its first-ever East Texas reporter. Based in Lufkin, she covers a vast region that borders three states and stretches north to Texarkana and south to Beaumont.

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This story was first published by The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

April signaled the beginning of blistering heat for much of Texas. And while the summer heat is uncomfortable for many, it can be deadly for the people incarcerated in Texas’ prison system where temperatures regularly reach triple digits.

With another sweltering summer likely ahead, on April 22 prison rights advocates filed a complaint against Texas Department of Criminal Justice executive director Bryan Collier, arguing that the lack of air conditioning in the majority of Texas prisons amounts to cruel and unusual punishment.

The filing came from four nonprofit organizations who are joining a lawsuit originally filed last August by Bernie Tiede, an inmate who suffered a medical crisis after being housed in a Huntsville cell that reached temperatures exceeding 110 degrees. Tiede, a well-known offender whose 1996 murder ... Read more

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