April 30, 2007 in City

Man found dead in Spokane jail

By The Spokesman-Review
 

A man died in Spokane County Jail Saturday after being arrested on suspicion of drunken driving.

David G. Weilby, 66, was arrested about 7 p.m., posted bail about 9:15 p.m., but then was found dead in a cell at about 10:20 p.m. when an officer went to retrieve him, said Spokane County Sheriff’s Lt. Earl Howerton.

It’s unclear how Weilby died, but Howerton said Weilby was showing no physical symptoms other than those typically seen in people booked for DUI.

Howerton said he doesn’t know why another man in the same cell didn’t alert corrections staff.

When a deputy went to the cell at 10:20 p.m., Weilby was unconscious.

Paramedics were unable to revive him.

Just an hour earlier Weilby was signing paperwork to be released from jail on bond, said Howerton. That was about two hours after Spokane Police arrested Weilby on suspicion of DUI after a crash in northeast Spokane.

Details about the crash and his arrest were unavailable Sunday. Also unclear is where he lived.

Howerton said he didn’t know if Weilby was suffering from a medical condition when booked into jail.

The Sheriff’s major crimes unit is investigating Weilby’s death, and an autopsy is expected to be conducted by the medical examiner’s office.

Weilby is the fourth person to die in custody at the Spokane County Jail since January 2006.

Shariesa Rosetta Oneil, 39, died in December of an undetermined medical problem. According to the Sheriff’s Office, Oneil was arrested on domestic assault charges but was treated at the hospital for overdosing on diet pills before being booked. Two days later, officers noticed her moving slowly and called for an ambulance; she was pronounced dead at a Spokane area hospital.

Gerard C. Leake, 52, died at the Spokane County Jail in June 2006 in a solitary cell. He had been refusing to eat or take mental-health medicine.

Inmate Benites S. Sichiro died in January 2006 after fighting with corrections officers, who then forcefully subdued him. One officer reportedly used a maneuver called a “donkey kick,” which has since been banned for use in the jail.


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