MARTINEZ — For the first time in more than a year, a person has died at the Martinez Detention Facility, the Contra Costa Sheriff’s office announced Tuesday.
The Sheriff’s office did not immediately release information about the person or how they died, but said more information will be released on Wednesday. A brief statement by an office spokesman says only that the death is under investigation.
No deaths were reported at the jail in all of 2021, according to a tally of all law enforcement-involved fatalities conducted by Contra Costa County officials.
The most recent reported deaths inside the Contra Costa jail system came in late 2020, when three different fatal incidents were reported in September, October, and November. They included a suicide, a mysterious fentanyl overdose, and a man who died on the operating table after two other inmates allegedly broke his jaw during a fight. The two alleged attackers were later charged with murder.
All in-custody deaths in Contra Costa are investigated by the District Attorney’s office as part of a county protocol, which ends with a coroner’s inquest hearing. At the hearing, involved law enforcement personnel are called to testify and jurors determine the official manner of death from four choices: suicide, homicide, accident, or natural causes.