Ralkina Jones, Another African-American Dies While In Police Custody at the Cleveland Heights City Jail

Ralkina Jones a 37-year-old is African-American woman, is the third person to die under seemingly questionable circumstances while in police custody in less than two weeks. An investigation is underway after a Cleveland woman died at the Cleveland Heights City Jail.

The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office said Ralkina Jones, 37, died at the city’s jail on Sunday. Jones was arrested Friday, July 24, after officers responded to a fight between her and an ex-spouse, Brandon Jones, at Save-A-Lot.

According to the police report, Brandon was sitting inside of a business when someone told him that Ralkina was damaging his vehicle. Ralkina was accused of breaking out the driver’s side window of Brandon’s Ford Expedition and attempting to smash the windshield.

Ralkina then started swinging a tire iron at Brandon and hit his left forearm. Brandon was able to get the tire iron away from Ralkina, but she continued to hit him. Brandon and another man, Lonnie T. White, walked away, but Ralkina got in a vehicle and followed them.

According to the men, Ralkina attempted to hit them with her vehicle. Ralkina’s 12-year-old daughter was in the backseat of her vehicle. She was arrested and held on charges of felonious assault, domestic violence and child endangerment.

Ralkina was being treated for several medical conditions that were documented when she arrived at the jail, and she was given her prescribed medicine as directed.

On Saturday, a jail administrator noticed that Ralkina appeared to be lethargic. Ralkina was taken to HealthSpan. She returned to the jail shortly before 11 p.m. that night.

Around 12:45 a.m., paramedics were called again to check her vitals. According to officials, everything appeared to be normal.

Ralkina was observed throughout the night during routine jail checks.

Shortly after 7:30 a.m., she was found unresponsive in her jail cell bed.

The Medical Examiner has now completed an autopsy and says the death doesn’t appear “suspicious,” but it remains under investigation.

Read the full Police Report Below:

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS POLICE DEPARTMENT
40 Severance Circle, Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118

NEWS RELEASE
CONTACT: Jeffrey E. Robertson, Chief of Police
PHONE: (216) 291­4974
FAX: (216) 691­0742
EMAIL: chief@clvhts.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 27, 2015

On July 26, 2015 at approximately 0735hrs, during a routine jail check of prisoners incarcerated in the
Cleveland Heights Jail Facility, Ralkina Jones was found unresponsive in a holding cell. Cleveland
Heights Fire personnel were immediately contacted and responded to the jail to render assistance. Squad
personnel were unable to locate any vital signs and it was determined by CHFD paramedics that Ms. Jones
was deceased.

The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner is currently investigating Ms. Jones’s cause of
death. The autopsy was completed today and it revealed no suspicious injuries. The exact cause of death
will be determined by the Medical Examiner pending further studies.

The following are the circumstances surrounding the arrest and incarceration of Ms. Jones.
Ms. Jones was arrested on the evening of Friday, July 24, 2015 after officers responded to a 9­1­1 call
regarding an altercation between Ms. Jones and an ex­spouse.

Ms. Jones was taken into custody around 2225hrs.
without incident and held on charges of felonious assault, domestic violence, and child
endangerment. Ms. Jones was being treated for several medical conditions that were documented during
her intake process and she was administered her prescribed medication as directed.

On Saturday July 25, 2015 at approximately1915hrs, the jail administrator observed Ms. Jones to be
lethargic and called the Cleveland Heights Fire Department for emergency medical service. Paramedics
transported Ms. Jones by ambulance to HealthSpan.

Ms. Jones was evaluated and released by HealthSpan
and returned to the Cleveland Heights Jail around 2240hrs. Paramedics were called again on Sunday, July
26, 2015 at approximately 0045hrs to check on Ms. Jones and found her vitals to be normal at that time.
Ms. Jones was observed overnight through routine jail checks. She was later found unresponsive in the bed
of the holding cell.

Ms. Jones’s emergency contact and family members were notified on Sunday morning. Our thoughts are
with Ms. Jones’s loved ones during this time of loss.

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