Texas corrections officials getting legal heat about high summer temperatures inside state prisons are trying to make conditions more bearable in a handful of units by installing cooling devices similar to ones used on the sidelines of football games.
Prison officials insist it's a routine upgrade they look at every summer — not a response to lawsuits that allege the conditions are responsible for numerous inmate deaths.
But an attorney for plaintiffs in the lawsuits says the improvements, however small, are no coincidence.
Texas prison agency spokesman Jason Clark says converting all 109 of the state's lockups to include air conditioning would be extremely expensive.
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