VIDEO: Why Did Marc Moreno Die?

Marc Moreno was 18 years old when he died in the Benton County Jail in Washington State. Why didn’t Marc received proper treatment for his mental illness while in jail? How did the system fail him even before he was arrested?  Why did Marc Moreno die?

Attorneys at Rooted in Rights’ parent organization, Disability Rights Washington, began investigating the death of Marc Moreno early in 2016. At the time, Marc’s death had made local headlines in his community in central Washington State. Most of the attention focused on the Benton County Jail, where Marc died. But Marc had been arrested while experiencing a mental health crisis, which raised many more questions.

More Videos on Criminal Justice

More on Mental Illness and Jail in WA State

A Preventable Death

This video lays out some of the facts of his story and asks you to think about what contributed to his death. How we can improve the system of community mental health services to make sure other young people with mental illness aren’t denied the care they need?

Follow Updates from Marc’s case at this link:

Justice for Marc Anthony Moreno Facebook Page

Local News Reports

No place to be sick: When jail cell becomes a death chamber

Mentally ill inmate’s family to sue Benton County for $5M

Family: Mentally ill teen didn’t need to die in Benton County jail

Video sparks protest of teen’s death at Benton County jail

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provided federal funding for the cost of producing this video (Award #2X98SM005397-17). The contents are the sole responsibility of Disability Rights Washington, the parent organization of Rooted in Rights, and do not necessarily represent the official views of SAMHSA.


Rooted in Rights exists to amplify the perspectives of the disability community. Blog posts and storyteller videos that we publish and content we re-share on social media do not necessarily reflect the opinions or values of Rooted in Rights nor indicate an endorsement of a program or service by Rooted in Rights. We respect and aim to reflect the diversity of opinions and experiences of the disability community. Rooted in Rights seeks to highlight discussions, not direct them. Learn more about Rooted In Rights