Investigation into jail death likely to take months

Mark Wilson

The investigation into the death of Somervell County resident Curtis Allen Resecker is likely to take several months.

That’s according to Lt. Johnny Rose, a spokesman for the Hood County Sheriff’s Office. Resecker, 38, was an inmate in the Hood County Jail when he died in his cell from an apparent hanging on the morning of May 18. His body was discovered at about 5 a.m., according to a news release.

So far, the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office in Fort Worth has released only a preliminary report.

“If no foul play is suspected, it’s going to be suicide by hanging,” Rose stated Tuesday.

The Texas Rangers are investigating along with the Sheriff’s Office, which is the case with any inmate who dies in custody.

Rose said the final results of the autopsy, including the toxicology report, could take several months. The investigator has to wait to receive that information that before he can make a final conclusion, Rose said.

“An investigation of this type takes time,” Rose said, asking that those wanting answers have patience and let the investigation take its course.

This marked the fourth death of a Hood County Jail inmate since June 2015. Rose said two of those were ruled to be from natural causes.

The June 28, 2015 death of 33-year-old Hood County resident Cory Ry Molder was ruled a suicide by hanging in the Granbury jail.

In 2016, 69-year-old Arthur Bagby’s death in the Hood County Jail was ruled by the medical examiner to be from natural causes.

In March of this year, 25-year-old Angel Isaiah Hernandez died after being found unresponsive in his Hood County Jail cell. Rose said Hernandez was found to have had a heart problem that caused his death.

Jailers are required to check each inmate once every 30 minutes, according to the lieutenant. That is stepped up to once every 15 minutes for an inmate that is on suicide watch, Rose said.

Rose said that Resecker was not on a suicide watch because he had given authorities no indication that he might be at risk.

“If they (inmates) say anything to us (about suicide thoughts), we will act on it. It’s unfortunate. We try to help anybody that has mental issues,” Rose said, adding that “sometimes it’s impossible to prevent.”

Rose said that the Hood County Sheriff’s Office employs a deputy who specializes in mental health issues, and there are two MHMR workers who deal with jail inmates.

“They try to go extra steps to make sure inmates get help,” Rose said. “The sheriff is taking steps to prevent any type of suicide.”

Although paramedics were called to the scene when Resecker was found, he “remained unresponsive,” and was pronounced dead in the jail, according to a previous Hood County Sheriff’s Office news release.

The Hood County Jail houses Somervell County’s male inmates, and Somervell County holds Hood County’s female prisoners, because of a longtime agreement between the two counties.

Resecker was charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of deadly conduct, one count of retaliation and one count of violation of a protective order.