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Second Inmate Death This Year at County Jail

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Another inmate has died after being booked at the Tuolumne County Jail. It´s the second death of an inmate at the jail this year.

The Sheriff’s office says 53-year-old Christine Ortiz of Sonora was brought in yesterday, accused of being drunk in public. Authorities say Ortiz was too intoxicated to be booked, so she was taken to Tuolumne General Hospital until she could be cleared for booking.

Ortiz was later taken back to the jail. The Sheriff’s Department says guards checked on Ortiz every 15 minutes. On one of those checks, she was found unconscious. An ambulance was called and Ortiz was taken back to TGH, where she was pronounced dead.

The exact cause of death is not yet known.

The State Department of Justice and the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s department is investigating. An autopsy will be performed.

Another inmate, 52-year-old David Scaruffi, was found dead in his cell at the jail in mid September. Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Lt. John Steely says that was the first death at the jail in about 8 years.