NewsOK: Oklahoma City News, Sports, Weather & Entertainment

Oklahoma family seeks answers after woman's death at county jail

Related content

Inmate death is sixth of the year at Oklahoma County jail

Sindi Spray

Sindi Spray

An Oklahoma family is seeking answers after their daughter died last weekend at the Oklahoma County jail.

Sindi Spray, 24, died Sunday after being found unresponsive in her cell about 5 p.m. She died of a perforated ulcer, according to the state medical examiner's office.

Rhonda Spray, Sindi Spray's mother, said her daughter had suffered from stomach pain for most of her life. A representative from the state medical examiner's office told the family that Sindi Spray would have been in "excruciating" pain before she died. Rhonda Spray, of Atwood, said she's certain her daughter would have reported being in pain.

“How long did my daughter lay there without being checked on?” Rhonda Spray said.

Mark Opgrande, a spokesman for the Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office, said a detention officer had checked on Spray about a half hour before other inmates noticed she was unresponsive and called guards.

All inmates undergo a medical screening before being booked into the jail, Opgrande said. Inmates who are in immediate medical danger are taken to a hospital, he said. Inmates who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol but are still functional may be placed on observation, Opgrande said.

Spray underwent detox treatment for heroin use after being jailed, said Oklahoma County Sheriff P.D. Taylor.

Spray had been charged in Oklahoma County with offering to engage in prostitution by using computers. She was arrested June 19 after police say she placed a sex ad online. She then agreed to meet an undercover Oklahoma City police detective at a Motel 6 on Tinker Diagonal in Midwest City, where she offered to have sex with the detective in exchange for $100 up front and another $100 later.

Midwest City officers who were assisting in the arrest found a black zipper bag with a hypodermic needle and a spoon with a sticky, brown residue in a nearby car where Spray's boyfriend was waiting. Spray told police the drug paraphernalia was hers. She was charged with a municipal illegal drug offense in Midwest City.

After Spray failed to appear for a hearing, an Oklahoma County district judge issued a bench warrant, court records show. She was arrested in Pottawatomie County and taken to the Oklahoma County jail Thursday.

Spray was the sixth inmate to die in jail custody this year.

In February, inmate Nicholas Green died of an accidental drug overdose, officials said. The following month, inmate Richard Holt died of a rare flesh-eating bacteria, the state medical examiner reported. In May, inmate Clark Streetman died at a hospital, where he was taken after jail staff couldn't wake him up. The state medical examiner determined he died of natural causes. In May, Blaine Petrie died of cardiac arrhythmia, according to the state medical examiner's office.

Inmate Jeremy Lee Simmons in July. The state medical examiner's office has not released Simmons' cause of death.

Last year, 12 inmates died in jail custody.

Contributing: Nolan Clay, staff writer

Related content

Inmate death is sixth of the year at Oklahoma County jail

Robert Medley

Robert Medley has been a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1989, covering various news beats in the Oklahoma City metro area and in the Norman news bureau. He has been part of the breaking news team since 2008. A 1987 University of Oklahoma... Read more ›

Silas Allen

Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri. Read more ›