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Family demands answers after Oklahoma County detainee found dead

By Shelby Montgomery

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    OKLAHOMA COUNTY, Oklahoma (KOCO) — After a detainee was found dead at Oklahoma County Detention Center, the family is demanding answers.

On Saturday, Andrew “Dre” Avelar was found unresponsive in his cell. He died after being taken to the hospital.

Andrew was set to be released soon, according to his family. They said they were told he attempted suicide but the family said that doesn’t add up.

Jail officials said they performed life-saving measures and took him to the hospital where he later died.

“I don’t condone what he did to get in here but he should be able to do his time and get out,” said Rudy Avelar, father.

Avelar was charged with stalking and domestic assault and was serving time at the Oklahoma County Detention Center.

The family said they were told he tried to hang himself but Avelar’s dad said he wasn’t suicidal. Now, they are looking for answers.

The Oklahoma County Detention Center released a statement that said in part: “They will gather the facts of the case by reviewing cameras, interviewing staff and detainees and determine if procedures and policies were followed.”

However, the family wants their own investigation, their own autopsy and is hiring a lawyer.

“The family is also asking for the surveillance camera that shows the activity of Mr. Avelar and the cell activity for a 24-hour period leading up to his death,” said Michael Washington, Oklahoma Coalition Against People Abuse.

The family went down to the medical examiner’s office to see if Andrew’s body is being held there. They were told they needed an appointment.

There is still no cause of death. The family said they will be back.

“We will be back again. We’re not done,” Rudy said.

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