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Mississippi inmate dies months after becoming ill

A Mississippi inmate who was serving a 15-year sentence has died after becoming ill months ago and being hospitalized periodically since December.

The state Department of Corrections said Monday that Mary Jewell, 40, died Sunday at Merit Health Central in Jackson, where she was taken from Central Mississippi Correctional Facility.

Jewell was tested for the new coronavirus while she was hospitalized, and the results were negative, the department said. An autopsy will be done.

Jewell was sentenced in May 2010 in Lee County for convictions on one count of attempted armed robbery and two counts of possession of a weapon by a felon. She had been in prison since June 2010.

Mississippi’s prison system is under investigation by the U.S. Justice Department because several inmates died during outbursts of violence late last year and early this year. Jewell was at least the 32nd Mississippi inmate to die since late December.

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