PASCO -- A Franklin County inmate found dead in his cell in December died of accidental water intoxication, said Franklin County Coroner Dan Blasdel.
Henry Montelongo, 55, was taking medication that caused him to feel thirsty, and the autopsy showed he drank an excessive amount of water before he died.
Montelongo was arrested Dec. 21 on a domestic violence allegation after he reportedly tried to stab his mother.
Montelongo's brother came to his mother's rescue and pushed him away from her, causing Henry Montelongo to fall and get a minor cut on his forehead, investigators said.
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Before he was taken to jail, sheriff's deputies took Montelongo to Lourdes Medical Center in Pasco to be checked.
"It was while he was being treated that his sodium levels were noticed to be extremely high," Blasdel told the Herald. "The hospital staff said to not let him drink an overabundance of water."
Montelongo was found dead on the floor of his cell the next night.
"He was in a cell all by himself, and he'd stuffed toilet paper in the sink so there was water all over the floor and his clothes," Blasdel said. "He was always thirsty."
Blasdel referred to the Journal of Clinical Pathology to explain that water intoxication causes an electrolyte imbalance and even can make someone appear to have a psychotic illness.