A 38-year-old Mexican national who was being held by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) pending his removal from the United States died Saturday morning at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo.
Santiago Sierra-Sanchez was taken to the hospital early Saturday morning after Utah County Jail officials found him unresponsive in the jail’s medical unit, according to a Monday news release from ICE.
He was transported by ambulance to the hospital where he was declared dead by doctors at about 4:20 a.m. The official cause of death will be determined by the Utah Office of the Medical Examiner.
Sierra-Sanchez came into ICE custody July 11 after being identified by ERO officers as a previously deported criminal alien while he was being held on local charges in Salt Lake County, according to the news release.
Following his arrest by ICE, Sierra-Sanchez was screened by medical professionals at the Utah County Jail, ICE’s contracted detention facility. At that time, he complained of back pain and was placed under medical observation. According to jail officials, he did not report any other medical conditions.
ICE was working with Mexican consular officials to notify his family in Mexico.
Sierra-Sanchez is the fifth detainee to pass away in ICE custody in fiscal year 2014, according to ICE.
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