Inmate dies in custody of Coconino County Sheriff’s Department. ‘Medical emergency’ while in transport

Meteor staff reporting

Friday, July 31, 5-PM MST

The Coconino County Sheriff’s department has released a statement concerning today’s (Friday, July 31) inmate death

“On Friday July 31, 2020, at approximately 2:11 pm, an inmate from the Coconino County Detention Facility died while at Flagstaff Medical Center.”

According to the Department statement on July 29, 2020 “a local law enforcement agency” was initiating the booking process into the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office Temporary Holding Facility in Page, AZ. During the booking process, the arrestee refused to answer any medical related questions asked by Detention Officers. Officers noticed a laceration on the arrestee’s finger that appeared red, swollen, and hot to the touch. Officers contacted the Detention medical staff in Flagstaff, relayed the information, and the arrestee was refused acceptance.

The arresting agency transported the arrestee to the Page Emergency Department. The arrestee refused all medical treatment while at the hospital. Ultimately the arrestee was transported back to the holding facility. Again, the arrestee refused to answer all medical questions and refused to allow vitals to be checked by our officers.

Detention staff contacted the Detention Medical staff in Flagstaff, explained the arrestee’s refusal for treatment at the hospital and the refusal to answer medical questions and vitals to be checked. After recording that the arrestee had refused medical treatment and refused to answer medical questions, Coconino County Jail medical staff advised Jail officers to accept the arrestee. The arrestee was processed and booked into the Page holding facility.

On Friday morning, July 31, 2020, the inmate was on a transport from Page to be housed in the County Jail in Flagstaff Facility to wait for a court appearance.  The Sheriff’s press release states that while on transport the inmate began to have a medical related emergency.

Detention Officers pulled over, contacted dispatch, requested emergency services and began life savings measures. Emergency Medical Services responded, took over life saving measures and transported the inmate to the Flagstaff Medical Center (FMC).

The inmate was taken into emergency surgery and came out of surgery at approximately 1:00 pm.  At 2:11 pm our officers guarding the inmate at FMC notified Sheriff’s Command staff that the inmate was deceased.

The cause of death is currently under investigation by the Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division and pending autopsy and review by the Coconino County Medical Examiner.

The name of the inmate and any further information is being withheld pending next of kin notification.

The Sheriff’s Department have not yet responded to emails requesting clarification on which agency arrested the man and why.


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