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Madison Co. Sheriff Responds to Inmate Death

By Emily Cassulo
By ecassulo@wbbjtv.com

JACKSON, Tenn. - Madison County deputies are investigating the death of an inmate inside the county jail Friday afternoon.

7 Eyewitness News was told corrections officers found Zachary Ligon, 17, hanging from a bed sheet inside his cell just before 12:30 p.m.

Sheriff David Woolfork said Ligon was just transferred from juvenile court Wednesday, on charges of aggravated assault, three counts of aggravated burglary, unlawful possession of a weapon, and reckless endangerment.

Sheriff Woolfork said Ligon was not on suicide watch, and officers checked on him 15 minutes before he was found.

"After we had a previous suicide, I issued a policy that if a person is on suicide watch, to watch them every 10 to 15 minutes," Woolfork said. "But as demostrated today, it only takes about 5 to 10 minutes for a person to harm themselves.

Sheriff Woolfork told 7 Eyewitness News they are still in the preliminary stages of the investigation, but at this point, it does not appear that any policies were violated.

Woolfork would not say if they would make any policy changes after Friday.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is assisting in the case.