A Black Man Jailed Since April For Petty Theft Was Found Dead In His Cell
A black man was found dead in his cell after being held for four months without bail for allegedly stealing $5 worth of item from a 7-Eleven.
Jamycheal Mitchell, who had mental health issues, was found lying on the floor of his Portsmouth, Va., cell last Wednesday by guards. While still awaiting the results of an autopsy, senior prison officials said his death does not appear suspicious.
"As of right now it is deemed ‘natural causes’,” Natasha Perry, the master jail officer at the Hampton Roads regional jail, said in an interview.
Mitchell's family said he had bipolar disorder and suffered from schizophrenia for about five years. They also believe the 24-year-old, nicknamed Weezy, died due to starvation after refusing meals and medication from the prison.
"His body failed,” Roxanne Adams, Mitchell's aunt who's also a nurse said. "It is extraordinary. The person I saw deceased was not even the same person.”
Mitchell was arrested back in April for allegedly stealing a Mountain Dew, a Snickers bar and a Zebra cake. His death comes on the heels of 28-year-old Sandra Bland, who died in police custody after being arrested following a routine traffic stop in Texas, as well as 37-year-old Ralkina Jones who was found unresponsive in a Cleveland Heights cell after being arrested for allegedly attacking her ex-husband and his car with a tire iron.