The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

January 27, 2012

Older inmate dies in county jail

WASHINGTON — State Police are investigating the death Thursday morning of an inmate at the Daviess County Security Center.

Delmar Priddy was found by jail staff unresponsive in his cell at 8 a.m. The 63-year-old had been an inmate since his arrest Saturday night.

Daviess County Sheriff Jerry Harbstreit said Priddy had been arrested by sheriff’s deputies for driving while intoxicated. He was originally taken to Daviess Community Hospital because his blood-alcohol count was above .3 percent; the legal limit is .08 percent.

“Before he came in, he tested really high,” Harbstreit said. “We took him to the emergency room and he was out there several hours.”

Harbstreit said Priddy was placed up front in a single padded cell at the jail so staff could keep an eye on him.

“He had one fellow that might have bonded him out, but thought it would be better to leave him and try to get him straightened out a little,” the sheriff said.

Jail staff had served Priddy breakfast at 6 a.m. Thursday. When they returned at 8 a.m. to administer his medication he was unresponsive. The Daviess County Coroner’s Office responded to the jail and pronounced Priddy dead a short time later.

“We always call somebody else to come in,” Harbstreit said, explaining why the state police were conducting the investigation. “I notified the state jail inspector and my lawyer and explained what happened. The jail inspector said, ‘You did everything you could do. You have a very well run jail.’”

An autopsy was scheduled for Thursday evening, but state police reports indicated no foul play was suspected.

Jail records show that Priddy has had other run-ins with area law enforcement.

In January 2010, he was arrested for failure to appear for operating a vehicle while intoxicated endangering a person; July 2009, he was served with a warrant from the state Department of Corrections, that same month he was charged with operation of a vehicle while intoxicated resisting law enforcement (fleeing); December 2005, he was served with a warrant out of Hendricks County for child molesting; and in January 2005, he was served with a warrant out of Martin County for perjury.

Harbstreit said he has been in contact with Priddy’s family in Ohio and they have all been notified.

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