Lawsuit: Help called too late for jailed woman who ate meth

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — A lawsuit filed by the family of a woman who died while being held in a North Carolina jail says she died “an agonizing death under inhumane conditions.”

The Asheville Citizen Times reports the family of 34-year-old Michele Quantele Smiley filed the lawsuit Wednesday against several Buncombe County law enforcement officials, jailers and a nurse. Smiley died in 2017 while in the county jail on a probation violation charge.

The lawsuit alleges Smiley told jailers she ingested “a lot” of methamphetamine to avoid prosecution for possession. It says Smiley suffered a severe reaction, and medical help was called more than an hour later. An autopsy says she died of methamphetamine toxicity. A state report found the jail failed to check on Smiley enough.

Defendants declined to comment, citing pending litigation.

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Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times, http://www.citizen-times.com

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