Army veteran Everett Palmer Jr. died in prison after allegedly banging his head against his cell door. When Palmer Jr.’s family first saw the body, the former Army paratrooper’s brain, heart, and throat had been removed, with the coroner offering no details as too why.
Authorities claim Palmer Jr., 41, suffered from a methamphetamine-induced fit, Business Insider reports, but his family believes otherwise.
“When we reached out to find out what happened to his organs, they initially lied,” Palmer’s brother Dwayne Palmer told Spectrum News NY1. “They directed us back to our funeral director and told us that we need to confer with them because they probably took the organs.”
A York County Prison statement said Palmer Jr. “became agitated and began hitting his head against the inside of his cell door.”
Palmer Jr. was restrained and taken to the prison medical clinic where he lost consciousness. After being transported to the York Hospital, he died. Coroner Pam Gay attributed the man’s death to “complications following an excited state, associated with methamphetamine toxicity, during physical restraint,” adding that the incident could have been made worse by sickle cell anemia.
Attorney Marlon Kirton believes Palmer Jr. died as a result of asphyxiation. He said the removal of Palmer Jr.’s organs, “makes no sense, unless you’re trying to maybe avoid people knowing how he died.”
Just two days earlier, Palmer Jr. had voluntarily turned himself in to police because of a DUI-related arrest warrant. The veteran crashed a Honda Accord in 2016 but failed to show up in court after the accident.
Palmer Jr. was working in Delaware as a personal trainer when he turned himself in, was not under the effects of methamphetamine at the time, and authorities have no explanation for how the drugs entered his system during two days in police custody.
According to the York Daily Record, The Pennsylvania State Police are still investigating Palmer Jr.’s death, which “leaves open the possibility that something becomes more clear down the road, at which point [the manner of death] will be changed,” Gay said.
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