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California inmate death investigated as drug overdose

September 8, 2019

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say the death of an inmate at San Luis Obispo County Jail is a likely overdose.

The sheriff’s office says the man was discovered unresponsive in his bunk in a dorm housing unit Friday afternoon. Staff began life-saving measures but the inmate did not respond and was later pronounced dead.

He was identified as 56-year-old Ernest Leonard Ortiz of Grover Beach. He had been in custody since March on a probation violation.

Officials said a short time after Ortiz was found, another inmate who had been seen with him collapsed from an apparent drug overdose. He received an injection of Narcan and was subsequently revived.

Both incidents are under investigation.

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