MONROE — Police are investigating the death of a 23-year-old inmate at the Monroe Correctional Complex over the weekend.
Edward Kemp Jr. was found unresponsive around 6:45 a.m. Saturday in his two-man cell inside the Washington State Reformatory, said Susan Biller, a spokeswoman for the prison.
Corrections officers performed CPR, but medics with Snohomish County Fire District 3 pronounced Kemp dead at 7:07 a.m., Biller said.
Kemp had been in the state prison system since March 2015. He was assigned to the Monroe prison in early July and was being kept in medium security, Biller said.
He was serving a nine-year sentence. He’d been convicted of assault with a firearm after an SUV with children inside was shot up in Burien. He’d told authorities he thought the driver was following him, according to news accounts at the time.
The Snohomish County Medical Examiner has been asked to determine the cause and manner of Kemp’s death.
Based on preliminary findings, his death appears to be related to drug use, said Debbie Willis, a Monroe Police Department spokeswoman.
Investigators are waiting for lab tests to be completed.
As part of the death investigation, police will try to determine how drugs could have reached Kemp inside the prison, Willis said.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.