ISP investigating death of Scott County inmate - News, Weather & Sports

ISP investigating death of Scott County inmate

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Johnnie Locklear Johnnie Locklear
Richard Smith Richard Smith

SCOTTSBURG, IN (WAVE) – The death of a southern Indiana inmate is under investigation after an autopsy could not determine a cause of death.

Johnnie Locklear, 48, died after being transferred to Scott County Hospital and now his family and close friends just want to know what happened.  

It was clear to Richard Smith that Locklear was not in the right state of mind on Wednesday when he was taken into custody after a call led deputies to man believed to be hallucinating.

"They said he was back there hallucinating and said he was talking and they said they put him under protective custody, so he won't hurt himself," Smith.

The Scott County Sheriff's Office took Locklear in on the charges of resisting and fleeing law enforcement and emergency detention. Smith said Locklear's behavior was highly unusual and he has never known him to take drugs or act like this. Smith has known Locklear for more than six years and he lived next door with Smith's son and daughter-in-law in Austin. Locklear would help Smith with contracting work.

"I trust him with anything I got," said Smith. "I had that feeling that I could trust John, he wouldn't hurt nobody. John helped me out quite a bit, too."

Scott County Sheriff Don McClain said early Saturday morning Locklear was taken to the hospital after going into cardiac distress. He died a couple hours later. McClain said Locklear was combative and hard to control while in jail. He was held in a padded cell and refused to cooperate with jailers.

"We want to know what happened to John because if anything went wrong, it could happen to somebody else, if it was right, no problem, but if it's not we want justice for John," said Smith.

Indiana State Police are now investigating as requested by Scott County. An autopsy was unable to determine a cause of death. Investigators are waiting for toxicology results to come back, which could take up to eight weeks.

Scott County has turned over all video surveillance to ISP.

Locklear does not appear to have a criminal history. 

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