Woman found dead in New York holding cell while awaiting hearing

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MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – Officials are investigating the death of 42-year-old Raynette Turner in her holding cell in Mount Vernon, New York. Turner is a mother of eight children who range in age from eight to 21.

WCBS reports Turner died Monday afternoon after spending two days awaiting an arraignment. She was allegedly arrested for shoplifting at a wholesale food store called Restaurant Depot.

KHOU reports that Turner was accused of stealing a small item from the store. The family’s lawyer, Osvaldo Gonzalez, told Turner’s husband Herman that she would likely be released without bail.

City officials report this was the third time Turner was arrested for shoplifting in three weeks.

On Sunday night, Turner reported that she was not feeling well and was taken by ambulance to the hospital. A few hours later, she was returned to her cell after being treated for hypertension. She was found dead in her cell at 2 p.m. Monday.

New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sent investigators from his team tasked with probing police-involved deaths to begin a preliminary inquiry, spokesman Eric Soufer told KHOU News. This is one of Schneiderman’s first cases since he was appointed,

It is not yet clear if a full investigation will be launched, and the autopsy is still pending.

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