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MAHONING COUNTY Inmate's death brings total since Dec. to 3



Published: Thu, May 10, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



The woman had been in the jail since Monday on a theft charge out of Boardman.

By PATRICIA MEADE

VINDICATOR CRIME REPORTER

YOUNGSTOWN -- A Mahoning County jail inmate has died, the third since late December.

Deputies found Christine L. Drvodelic at 6:40 a.m. today in a cell in the medical section of the jail, said sheriff's Maj. Michael Budd.

She appears to have died from natural causes sometime during the night, Budd said. The Mahoning County coroner's office is to perform an autopsy.

Drvodelic, 37, of Foster Avenue, had been in the jail since Monday, booked on a theft charge out of Boardman. At her arraignment Wednesday in county court in Boardman, bond was set at $2,500 and she returned to the jail by late morning, Budd said.

Upon her return, she told deputies that she didn't feel well and had nausea and flulike symptoms and was placed in a medical cell. Medical staff checked her then and administered medication and checked her again during the night, Budd said.

She may have had a substance abuse problem, he said.

Others who died: The other deaths occurred in December and April:

* In the pre-dawn hours of Dec. 26, Joseph D. Morris, a burglary suspect, became ill during the booking process. A few hours later, he was pronounced dead at St. Elizabeth Health Center. A coroner's report later showed that he had sickle cell anemia.

* Michael Warden died in the jail April 5. He had been held on heroin charges, with bond set at $50,000. The 42-year-old East Lucius Avenue man, born in Brooklyn, N.Y., had been in the jail since April 2.

A Mahoning County grand jury had secretly indicted a woman and nine men, including Warden, on charges that include trafficking in heroin, heroin possession and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. Police said the heroin ring operated between here and Brooklyn.

At Warden's arraignment in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court, Judge Maureen A. Cronin set bond at $50,000. The 290-pound man told the judge that he had "leg problems."

The jail had housed Warden in a medical cell because of stasis ulcers on his feet, Budd said at the time.

Budd said a jail nurse checked on Warden when he didn't respond to her knock on the door. She alerted deputies when she found he wasn't moving and called for an ambulance.




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