NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- The Norfolk Sheriff's Office has completed its internal investigation into the death of a teen at the Norfolk Circuit Courthouse in November.
The Norfolk Police Department’s investigation and the Medical Examiner found no indication of foul play, or that the failure of staff to follow policy and procedures led to or caused the death of 17-year-old Katrell Washington on November 16, 2017.
The medical examiner determined Washington's cause of death was suicide. Deputies, who are required to check on detainees at least twice an hour, found him in the cell Thursday. They administered CPR until paramedics arrived and took him to the hospital.
However, investigators did identify instances, unrelated to the cause of Washington’s death, where personnel did not follow standard policies and procedures in some areas of normal operations.
According to the Sheriff's Office, appropriate disciplinary actions have been taken to hold individuals accountable for the deficiencies on Friday.
Investigators suggested one way avoid these issues in the future; allow other law enforcement officers to complete a form which would list concerns related to an inmate's mental or medical health before accepting them into the jail or prison.
No form, or law allowing this to happen currently exist in Virginia. Sheriff Joe Baron has asked local law legislators to help make this form mandatory.
“We are always looking for new ways and resources to better address mental illness in our jail. Our hearts go out to the family and friends who are mourning the loss of this young man. Words cannot express the pain that suicide leaves in its wake,” Sheriff Joe Baron said.
Washington was awaiting a hearing regarding his charges of Malicious Wounding (2 counts), Attempted Malicious Wounding and Threatening a School Employee.