SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A 73-year-old man who was on a court-ordered compassionate release from San Diego Central Jail has died in a hospital after being taken off life support by medics who were treating him for pneumonia associated with COVID -19, sheriff’s officials said Saturday.
On September 17, 2020, Rafael Ruiz was arrested by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and taken to Vista Detention Center. He was charged with multiple counts of suspected lewd act with a child under 14, lewd act with a child under 14 using force, aggravated sexual assault of a child and of sexual penetration on a child under 10 years of age.
Ruiz was transferred to San Diego Central Jail to receive specialist support for a long-term medical condition, according to Lt. Thomas Seiver. On January 31, he was admitted to hospital with respiratory complications associated with pneumonia due to COVID-19. Ruiz’s health declined, the lieutenant said.
On Friday, the sheriff’s department, with the approval of the San Diego Superior Court, compassionately released Ruiz from police custody.
“It gives the family the opportunity to say goodbye to their loved one and to be able to make medical decisions,” Seiver said. “After the court approved the compassionate release, but before deputies left the hospital, Ruiz was taken off life support under the direction of hospital doctors and pronounced dead at the hospital. hospital soon after,” Seiver said.
Ruiz was a resident of Vista. His family has been notified of his death.
The San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office will determine Ruiz’s cause and manner of death.
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