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26-year-old dies while in custody at county jail

A 26-year-old man died while in custody at Beltrami County jail after being found unresponsive in his cell Thursday morning.

In a news release, the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office says Tony Edward May, of Red Lake, was found by other cell mates who alerted jail staff at around 6:50 a.m.

Despite lifesaving efforts from fire and EMS personnel, May was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the sheriff’s office.

The investigation into his death has been passed on to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, while May’s body has been referred to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner for autopsy.

“The Sheriff’s Office, Jail Staff and Beltrami County officials extend sincere condolences to the family and friends of Tony May,” the Sheriff’s Office said.

Misty R. Johnson, believed to be May’s partner, paid tribute to him on Facebook, saying: “The moment I find someone that truly makes me happy and it’s all ripped away from me in a blink of an eye.”

According to custody records, May was originally booked in jail on July 7, pending court proceedings on suspicion of a DWI, driving with a revoked license, and fleeing a police officer.

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