Authorities investigating two separate inmate deaths in Mississippi

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State investigators are looking into the deaths of two different inmates in Mississippi.

Roderick Cooks, 45, passed away in a holding cell in the Leake County Correctional Facility on Friday, May 17 after being arrested for careless driving and possession of drug paraphernalia. Sheriff Randy Atkinson told Breezy News that Cooks had a bag of what was believed to be meth in his mouth while being searched and refused to spit out the contents.

Jail staff and medical personnel were monitoring Cooks when he started displaying some health concerns. Emergency medical responders were called to the scene, but efforts to revive cooks were unsuccessful. He died at the scene. The State Crime Lab is testing the substances in Cooks’ mouth and looking to determine a cause of death. Authorities with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation (MBI) have taken over the case.

The MBI is also assessing the death of a Perry County inmate. While details remain sparse, officials have confirmed that the deceased inmate is a male, though his name has not been released at this time, and that no foul play is suspected in connection to his death. An autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death.

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