An autopsy is scheduled today for the 16-year-old Winterhaven boy who took his life this week at the Imperial County juvenile hall, a coroner’s official said Thursday.
Officials would not provide specific details about the boy but a statement issued by the County Counsel’s Office explained that staff and emergency medical personnel tried reviving the youth but were unsuccessful.
The boy was inside his cell Wednesday night when he was pronounced dead at 9 p.m., Imperial County Deputy Coroner Jesus Lara said.
A log entry at the Imperial County Sheriff’s Office reads authorities initially received a call at 8:28 p.m. about an attempted hanging at the facility. Scanner reports indicated that 18 minutes was spent in trying to revive the boy before he was pronounced dead.
A source familiar with the incident said Thursday the teen showed no signs of being despondent or gave any indication of what he intended to do.
The source said he believes the boy was in custody for resisting arrest.
Officials at the Sheriff’s Office and the Probation Department referred all questions to the county counsel, which reported that counselors from Imperial County Behavioral Health and the Imperial County Office of Education met with the juveniles in custody and corrections staff Wednesday and Thursday.
County Counsel Mike Rood said there was little he could publicly disclose about the incident because of its sensitive nature.
It was not immediately known who spotted the boy, how often bed checks were conducted or in what way, or with what the boy hung himself.
Rood he was not aware if the boy left a suicide note but that he wouldn’t be able to comment on such a detail.
An investigation by the Sheriff’s Office and a team consisting of probation, behavioral health and public health leaders is under way, the statement read.
“I don’t know of another incident in Imperial County,” Rood said when asked if this was the first time a youth had taken his life at the facility.
“I don’t know if there have been attempted suicides in the past,” Rood said.
Staff Writer Silvio J. Panta can be reached at 760-337-3442 or at firstname.lastname@example.org