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updated: 5/30/2012 11:08 PM

Kane County jail inmate dies after unspecified self-inflicted wounds

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  • Keith D. Renfroe Jr.

    Keith D. Renfroe Jr.


A 20-year-old was taken off life support last week after he was found unresponsive in his Kane County jail cell May 19 from a self-inflicted wound.

Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez said Wednesday that his office is conducting an internal investigation into the death of Keith D. Renfroe Jr. of Cottage Grove, Minn., who was arrested May 18 by Gilberts police and charged with felony trespassing.

Perez said Renfroe did not hang himself, but he did not say exactly how he injured himself.

"It's still an ongoing investigation," Perez said, adding that Renfroe was the lone occupant of the cell and did not indicate he was suicidal. "He was not found hanging. He was found unresponsive. Right now we're treating it as a death investigation. We're not using the word suicide."

Efforts to reach Renfroe's family in Minnesota were not immediately successful.

Gilberts police referred inquiries about Renfroe's arrest back to the Kane County Sheriff's Department.

According to court documents, Renfroe was accused of breaking through a front window of a home in the 200 block of Rockville Lane.

A resident of the home said he and his wife heard a loud banging outside their home at about 2 a.m. May 18. The man said he went downstairs and Renfroe was inside the home, saying two people were chasing him. Renfroe went into the bathroom and shut the door, remaining there until police arrived and arrested him, the resident said.

Renfroe was found unresponsive in his cell May 19 from a "self-inflicted injury," Perez said. A press release said Renfroe was seen standing near a sink in the cell during a check at 1:55 a.m. but was found face down at 2:12 a.m.

Perez said officers performed CPR and paramedics took Renfroe to Delnor Hospital in Geneva.

Perez said Renfroe was officially released from custody of the sheriff's department at 2:20 p.m. May 24 after his family ordered that he be removed from life support.

According to court records, prosecutors dropped the trespassing charges against Renfroe on May 23.

Loren Carrera, Kane County deputy coroner, said an autopsy was performed on Renfroe on Friday, but the office was not prepared to release a preliminary cause of death until it received toxicology results, which could take up to six weeks.

"It's an ongoing investigation," Carrera said. "We have to wait until we get the actual autopsy results before we report anything."

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