Investigation underway after inmate dies from ‘medical emergency’ at Texarkana jail


TEXARKANA, Texas (KTAL/KSHV) — The Texas Department of Public Safety Rangers Division and the Bowie County Sheriff’s Office are investigating the death of an inmate who had a medical issue that resulted in his death.

According to BCSO, deputies were called to 101 West Redwater Boulevard on Wednesday, May 19 about a disturbance. When they arrived at the scene, they found 55-year-old Paul Edwin Schmidt with visible injuries to his face, including both eyes being bruised.

Deputies say Schmidt was traveling with another man and the two had been involved in an argument that led to law enforcement contact. After speaking with both men, authorities learned that Schmidt had been assaulted at an area hotel a couple of days earlier.

Schmidt was arrested for possession of marijuana under two ounces and booked into the Bi-State Jail. Schmidt had his bond set Thursday morning and was in a holding cell when he suffered a medical emergency.

BCSO says Schmidt collapsed on the floor and was attended by jail medical staff. An ambulance was called and lifesaving efforts by the jail medical staff, Life Net personnel, and firefighters from the Texarkana Arkansas Fire Department continued until he was taken from the facility.

Schmidt was admitted to Wadley Regional Medical Center but died around 4:04 a.m. Friday. Justice of the Peace Nancy Talley ordered an autopsy that will be conducted by the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences at Dallas. Schmidt’s family has been notified of his passing.  

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