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BUTTE — Officials in Butte-Silver Bow County say a jail inmate died over the weekend by suffocating himself with a plastic garbage bag.

Coroner Lee LaBreche says 36-year-old John Fawcett of Butte was found in his cell at about 6 p.m. Saturday with the bag over his head. His death has been ruled a suicide.

Butte police Capt. Jerome McCarthy tells The Montana Standard that Fawcett gave no indication that he was suicidal. He said staff had spoken with Fawcett at about 5:35 p.m. Saturday.

McCarthy said Fawcett had a long history with law enforcement and had been on suicide watch during prior arrests, but had never attempted suicide while in jail. He was jailed on drug-related charges.

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The Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigations is investigating Fawcett's death.

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