Authorities are investigating the case of a male inmate who died while in custody at the Santa Cruz County jail last weekend, Sheriff Antonio Estrada said.
Francisco Lorenzo Beltran, 48, of Nogales, was pronounced dead Sunday evening, Estrada said, adding that foul play and suicide have already been ruled out as possible causes of death.
“There’s a lot of things, obviously, that we’re checking in on. We’re not, at this point, able to say, ‘This is this cause and this is what happened.’ We need to make that determination, but we have ruled out foul play and suicide,” Estrada told the NI on Monday afternoon, adding that an autopsy was set to be conducted Wednesday in Pima County.
The Arizona Department of Public Safety booked Beltran into the county jail on Saturday morning, Jan. 4, after a trooper conducted a traffic stop and found he had an outstanding warrant from a Santa Cruz County court for a child support violation.
Then on Sunday, someone from the jail called the Sheriff’s Office’s dispatch shortly before 5 p.m., requesting an ambulance for an “unresponsive” inmate, according to a call log.
Estrada confirmed that Beltran was found unresponsive in his cell during a routine check. However, it is still unclear how long he had been in that state. Medical personnel were called in to assist, but were unable to resuscitate him.
Estrada added that the Nogales Police Department opened an investigation into the case, and the Sheriff’s Office is also conducting an internal investigation.