The day after Christmas, a 69-year-old man in the County Jail suffered a “cardiac related medical emergency” at about 9:50 p.m. and died two hours later at Cottage Hospital. According to the Sheriff’s Office, another inmate discovered the suffering man — whose identity is being withheld pending family notification — and called custody staff for help. They were in the jail’s dormitory housing area. As the inmate was being taken by ambulance to the hospital, he became unresponsive, and life-saving procedures were not successful. Emergency room doctors pronounced him dead just before midnight.
The Sheriff’s Office said an investigation of his death is ongoing, but preliminary indications are that the man died of natural causes. He was arrested on December 22 by the Santa Barbara Police Department for failing to appear in court and for resisting an officer.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.