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El Salvadorian Hangs Himself in Oregon Jail

A man facing criminal charges in Washington County, Oregon, hanged himself in his cell, according to Washington County Sheriff's Sergeant Bob Ray.

El Salvadorian, Mario Alfredo Bautista-Garcia, 28, was arrested on May 15, 2012, after stabbing two men at a Tigard, Oregon, bus shelter. The victims did not know Bautista-Garcia and the motive for the crime was unclear.

A Washington County Grand Jury indicted Bautista-Garcia on May 22, 2012, charging him with assault in the second degree and possession of a weapon, related to the stabbing, according to Ray. If convicted of the assault charge, Bautista-Garcia would have faced a mandatory minimum of 70 months in prison.

Bautista-Garcia was confined in a single cell, but he was not on suicide watch, according to Ray. At 5:20 p.m., on May 22, 2012, Bautista-Garcia was found unconscious and hanging by the neck from a "piece of cloth," just 27 minutes after a guard had performed an hourly tier check, said Ray.

Guards immediately summoned medical staff and began CPR, but efforts to revive Bautista-Garcia were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Ray.

It is also unlikely that Bautista-Garcia was already aware of the Grand Jury indictment that was issued earlier in the day when he killed himself and the reason for his suicide is unclear. It is unknown if Bautista-Garcia had a history of suicidal ideation or self-harming behavior, but his violent attack of two complete strangers would suggest that he may have been mentally ill.

Bautista-Garcia's suicide was the Washington County Jail's first suicide since Alexander Lawrence Jay, 40, who ended his 100-year sentence by fatally stabbing himself in the arm with a pencil on July 17, 2011. See: (PLN, November, 2011, pp. 8-9).

Source: The Oregonian

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