Inmate dies from meth overdose in Napa County Jail

File photo of a jail cell.

NAPA (BCN) — An inmate who was found dead in his Napa County Jail cell last month died of acute methamphetamine intoxication, according to the Napa County coroner’s office.

An autopsy on Christopher Applegarth, 44, of Napa, found two small plastic bags containing the drug in his digestive system, Napa County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Blower said.

One of the bags was not sufficiently sealed and the methamphetamine was absorbed in Applegarth’s system, Blower said.

Applegarth had asked his cellmates to call for help, Blower said.

He was found unresponsive around 8:35 a.m. on Feb. 7 and was pronounced dead after attempts to revive him failed, Napa County spokeswoman Kristi Jourdan said.

The autopsy determined there was a lethal amount of methamphetamine in Applegarth’s system, Jourdan said.

“It won’t take much to overdose. The method of delivery is immediate, and there is very little time to save you,” Blower said. “The amount could kill three people.”

Applegarth was arrested Feb. 6 by a sheriff’s deputy in Napa on a warrant for a state parole violation. He was sentenced in mid-2015 for battery and false imprisonment during a fight in Napa, and had several arrests for drug and violent offenses since 1989, Blower said.

The Napa County Major Crimes Task Force also investigated the in-custody death, Jourdan said.

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