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Marion County DA reviewing state pen inmate death by “restraint asphyxia” January 28, 2008

Posted by FairSentencing in : Current News , trackback
Prosecutors are reviewing the death of a prison inmate who died during a struggle with correction officers at the Oregon State Penitentiary in December.

Courtland Geyer, a prosecutor in the Marion County District Attorney’s Office, said the Oregon State Police completed an investigation into the Dec. 3. death of David Schmidt, 34, who was in prison for kidnaping, assault and being a felon in possession of weapon.

Geyer said the state police routinely conduct investigations into inmate deaths. He said Marion County prosecutors review such investigations.

An autopsy concluded that Schmidt died of “restraint asphyxia due to exhaustion and chest compression,” Geyer said.

He declined to elaborate.

Prison officials provided few details because the case was under review.

“The Penitentiary is handling the David Schmidt case as a critical incident,” Michelle Whitney Dodson, spokeswoman for the prison, said in a statement. “A critical incident occurs whenever an officer/employee uses force pursuant to the department’s rule on Use of Force, resulting in serious injury or death, shootings of another person, and whenever a firearm is used as a warning.”



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