Latest Oklahoma County jail death being investigated as a possible fentanyl overdose –

Another Oklahoma County jail inmate died Sunday, possibly from an overdose of the drug fentanyl.
Kyle Steven Shaw, 36, was pronounced dead at the jail at 5:34 a.m. Sunday after life-saving efforts failed, the jail said in a news release.
“While we await the medical examiner’s report to know for certain the facts around this death, we acknowledge contraband and illegal narcotics are a problem in jails and prisons all over the country,” the jail administrator, Greg Williams, said.
“In recent months we have implemented several new steps to fight contraband, including random searches of employees and contract staff as they enter the building. We are working on several other actions, and in March we expect to update the Jail Trust regarding new procedures which will further limit the flow of contraband.”
The jail’s news release did not mention fentanyl, but Williams has told others that is the suspected cause.
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“It’s tragic,” said Public Defender Bob Ravitz, who spoke to Williams Monday.
An assistant public defender had been helping Shaw in his case, and the jail administrator contacted Ravitz for next-of-kin information
“Evidently Shaw took some fentanyl and it killed him. It’s a real serious issue,” Ravitz said. 
“It’s a real epidemic,” he said. “It’s so damn easy to get drugs into a jail, not matter what they do.
“I know for a fact they’ve had overdoses where they’ve been able to rescue the person. … You know, you’re in the jail, sometimes you’re three to a cell, you don’t get much free time and, unfortunately, you look for some way to get high.”
Shaw had been in jail since May 13 after being accused of hitting another man in the head with a metal pipe in Oklahoma City. His trial in the assault case was set to begin Feb. 28.
Shaw said he acted in self-defense after being struck first. “And at no time was there any, pole, stick or pipe of any kind, just bare hands,” he told the judge in a letter.
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A detention officer found Shaw unresponsive and lying on the floor of his cell at 4:49 a.m. Sunday, the jail said.
The officer went to the cell because Shaw and his cellmate had volunteered to distribute breakfast trays, the jail said. Only the cellmate came out. The officer noticed Shaw’s condition a few minutes later.
The cellmate has since told investigators Shaw said Sunday morning he was not feeling well.
Shaw’s death comes as Williams already is facing criticism over remarks he made in a private conversation last December.
“COVID is our friend,” he said while discussing improvements to the jail paid for by federal pandemic funds.
The private conversation was recorded because Williams had not hung up after leaving a phone message. The online news site, NonDoc, made public the voicemail last week after obtaining it.


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