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Virginia authorities launch investigation after woman, 30, dies in the back of a police cruiser

Authorities are conducting an investigation after a Virginia woman died in the back of a police cruiser. 

The unidentified woman, 30, allegedly shot herself while being transported to a hospital for a mental health evaluation by Spotsylvania Sheriff’s deputies  in the early hours of Monday morning. 

The two officers inside the vehicle were not injured.  

According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the woman was admitted to the crisis assessment center at the Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg on Sunday evening. 

Police say she had been ‘combative towards hospital employees’ and they were called to transfer her to Western State Hospital, around 100 miles away. 

Authorities are conducting an investigation after a Virginia woman died in the back of a Spotsylvania police cruiser similar to the one pictured

Authorities are conducting an investigation after a Virginia woman died in the back of a Spotsylvania police cruiser similar to the one pictured 

The woman had been seen by employees at at the Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg (pictured), before she was put into a police cruiser to be driven to another medical facility. She pulled out a gun just after the vehicle left the Mary Washington parking lot

The woman had been seen by employees at at the Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg (pictured), before she was put into a police cruiser to be driven to another medical facility. She pulled out a gun just after the vehicle left the Mary Washington parking lot 

Two officers managed to secure the woman in the back of their police cruiser, before she reportedly pulled out a handgun as the vehicle left the parking lot. 

She is said to have turned the gun on herself and fired one round. 

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene, and her remains were transferred to a local medical examiner’s officer for an autopsy. 

The Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office has handed the case over the Virginia State Police for investigation. 

On Friday, Virginia State Police Sgt. Brent Coffey stated: ‘There is no evidence that either deputy riding in the front seat of the vehicle discharged a weapon at any time.’

They are working to determine how the woman obtained a handgun. 

It is the second time in as many years that a person has shot themselves inside a Spotsylvania police vehicle. 

Back in August 2018, suicidal Christopher Howard was being transferred by police when he reportedly reached into one of the vehicle;s unattended consoles and retrieved a gun. 

Despite being handcuffed, he managed to shoot himself in the head. 

Miraculously, Howard managed to survive, and his family later threatened to file lawsuit against the Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office accusing them of negligence. 

It is the second time in as many years that a person has shot themselves inside a Spotsylvania police vehicle

It is the second time in as many years that a person has shot themselves inside a Spotsylvania police vehicle

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