Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Pinellas County Jail Investigates Deadly Fentanyl Exposures Among Inmates

Detectives from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office are investigating the death of 37-year-old inmate Jesse Stout. Stout was booked into the Pinellas County Jail on September 29, 2023, facing charges of Domestic Battery, 2 counts of Violation of Pre-Trial Release, Tampering with a Witness, and Resisting an Officer without Violence.

On Saturday, February 10, 2024, around 6:40 p.m., detention staff responded to a possible Fentanyl exposure in Pod 5 of C-Barracks at the Pinellas County Jail. Four inmates showed symptoms and were transported to the hospital. One inmate admitted to snorting Fentanyl. A nurse, three detention deputies, and a Largo Fire Department paramedic were treated for non-life-threatening symptoms. The exposure initially seemed isolated to Pod 5, which was evacuated and searched.

On Sunday, February 11, 2024, at approximately 1:45 a.m., three inmates in Pod 6, adjacent to Pod 5, exhibited Fentanyl exposure symptoms. Stout, found unresponsive, and two other inmates were taken to the hospital. Stout was pronounced deceased at 3:38 a.m. Two inmates remain in stable condition; others returned to the jail.

According to PCSO, the investigation revealed inmates obtained Fentanyl from one who ingested small baggies during arrest. After passing the drugs, he distributed them within the jail. Following the second incident, all C-Barracks housing pods were evacuated, searched, and deemed safe. Pod 6 inmates, when questioned, cited addiction as their reason for taking the drugs after witnessing Pod 5 inmates’ overdose.

Stout’s next of kin has been informed, and the investigation is ongoing.

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