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Suspect dies in St. Louis police custody

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – The St. Louis city police are investigating the death of a suspect while in custody. The suspect died at the department’s central patrol on North Jefferson Avenue. Police chief Sam Dotson said in a press briefing that Tuesday late afternoon 27-year-old white male was arrested in 3200 block of Missouri in South St. Louis after calls about prowler in the area. The man was taken into custody for trespassing and living in a condemned building.

He was transported to holding cell at the central patrol, where between 6:30 pm and 6:45 pm the suspect attempted to commit suicide by taking his sweat pants off and tying them to the cell bars and his neck.

Officers noticed the suicide attempt, and entered the cell. While in the cell a struggle ensued between officers and the suspect. During that struggle officers placed handcuffs and leg shackles on the suspect.

After subduing the suspect; he was observed to be rolling around on the floor in distress. Officers noticed he was having problems breathing and his pulse was faint.

As per department protocol, an ambulance had been called for following the discovery of the suicide attempt. EMT’s provide aid to the suspect and he was transported to the hospital.

He was later pronounced dead at the hospital.

Dotson further stated that the Force Investigation Unit would handle the investigation, and noted that the holding cell area was not completely cover by surveillance cameras.

He said he had been in touch with the city to have cameras installed holding cell area as soon as possible.