LANCASTERCOUNTY, S.C. -- The Lancaster County Sheriff's Office says their internal investigation into an inmate's death last week revealed several policy investigations.
Authorities say 44-year-old Randy Stevens was arrested last Monday on the charges of public disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after authorities received a call of a possibly-suicidal subject in the area of Memorial Park Road.
Deputies say Stevens was grossly intoxicated upon their arrival, and the complainant confirmed Stevens just needed treatment for his alcohol addiction.
Authorities asked Stevens several times if he was having suicidal thoughts, which he denied each time, according to the Sheriff's Office. Stevens then told Lancaster EMS that he wanted to go to the hospital because he was drunk and did not want to go to jail.
Stevens was arrested and charged with public disorderly conduct. Then, the Sheriff's Office says, Stevens pretended to pass out and was checked again by EMS, who said he appeared to be fine.
That's when, authorities say, Stevens became combative when placed in the patrol car. While en route to the detention center, officials say Stevens complained of chest pain, and EMS was called to assess Stevens' condition once more. Officials say Stevens continued to be irate and belligerent, and then told deputies to just take him to jail.
Then, Stevens threatened to do physical harm to the deputies when he was released, threatened to file a lawsuit and threatened to complain to the Sheriff, the investigation shows. EMSwas called out again to assess Stevens.
He was then taken to Memorial Hospital where he was again asked about having suicidal thoughts, which he again denied.
Stevens was cleared for incarceration and taken to the Lancaster County Detention Center.
The Sheriff's Office says Stevens continued to be uncooperative and belligerent, and that the staff wasn't even able to complete his booking process due to Stevens' behavior.
As is standard procedure with intoxicated persons, Stevens was placed in a private cell, and officials say Stevens continued to deny having suicidal thoughts.
Corrections officers continued attempts to calm Stevens down, and eventually, after bringing him a bag lunch from the cafeteria, authorities say their efforts began to succeed.
After eating his bag lunch, Stevens told the corrections officer he was going to sleep.
A short time later, the Lancaster County Sheriff's Office says Stevens hung himself with his bed sheet from a vent in his cell.
Attempts to revive Stevens failed, and EMSpronounced him deceased on the scene.
Sheriff BarryFaile says Stevens' suicide couldn't have been prevented. But the sheriff did say two employees had been fired and others disciplined because of violations of jail policy on how frequently officers should check on inmates, the Associated Press reports.
The Lancaster County Sheriff's Office says their internal investigation revealed several policy violations, specifically related to the amount of time between routine cell checks.
Although unrelated to Stevens' death, the Sheriff's Office says, the violations are very serious, and that neglect of duty is unacceptable.
The State Law Enforcement Division is conducting its own investigation, as is standard procedure in the case of any inmate death.