Central jail in downtown San Diego
The central jail in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Stone

An inmate who collapsed two months ago in a cell at San Diego Central Jail succumbed to heart failure from natural causes, the San Diego Sheriff’s department reported Monday.

Michael Richard Wilson, 32, was stricken at the Front Street detention center on the morning of Feb. 14.

“Deputies responded to the cell and saw (the) inmate in apparent medical distress,” Lt. Michael Blevins said. “The man did not appear injured, but soon after deputies entered the cell to help (him), they noticed he was unresponsive.”

Wilson, who was in custody on an assault charge, was pronounced dead a hospital about an hour later.

Homicide detectives were called in to investigate the fatality, which is standard protocol in cases involving in-custody deaths.

Following an autopsy, the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office concluded that Wilson died of natural causes — congestive heart failure and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, an ailment that affects the heart muscle.

— City News Service

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.