Man’s jail death of natural causes, Montrose County coroner says

A man found dead in a holding cell at the Montrose County Jail had suffered from a heart condition, according to the Montrose County Coroner’s Office.

Gerardo Velazquez-Velazquez, 45, died of natural causes on Sept. 12.

The coroner said a toxicology examination showed negative blood-alcohol and drug levels.

Velazquez-Velazquez was arrested the evening of Sept. 11 on a misdemeanor harassment charge, according to the Montrose County Sheriff’s Department.

He was placed on a mental-health hold for acute intoxication. Montrose authorities have said his cell was checked every 15 minutes until his intoxication levels fell. Velazquez-Velazquez was found dead in his cell around 4:30 p.m. the next day.

The death was the second in a three-week span involving a man in custody at the Montrose County Jail.

Andrew “Shawn” Gibson, 50, died of natural causes Aug. 29, while in the jail’s work-release program.

Gibson’s death, which the coroner has said likely occurred early Aug. 29, was not noticed by staff until 5:40 p.m. that day.


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