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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

23-year-old dies in Spokane County Jail

The Spokane County Jail is pictured.  (Jesse Tinsley/The Spokesman-Review)

A 23-year-old inmate was found dead in his cell Thursday morning at the Spokane County Jail.

Spokane County has not shared the man’s name or cause of death. Jessica Hines, a county spokeswoman, said law enforcement officers had taken the man to the hospital about a week ago before he was booked into the jail.

Sheriff’s Office spokesman Mark Gregory said the incident is under investigation and that there were no obvious signs indicating the cause of death.

Deaths and suicides have been regular occurrences at multiple iterations of the Spokane County Jail over the decades.

Eight inmates died during a 14-month stretch from 2017 to 2018, including three by hanging. More than a dozen inmates in the last 25 years have died by suicide in the Spokane County Jail.

Several deaths have led to lawsuits and settlements that have cost the county millions of dollars.

For instance, a jury in July awarded $27 million to the family of a woman who died in the jail of a ruptured intestine. The county has spent more than $4 million since 2000 on settlements related to deaths and injuries at the jail.