DOVER, Del. — Dover police are reporting that a 24-year-old shoplifting suspect died while in police custody two weeks ago.

Authorities said in a news release Wednesday that John T. Manning III was found unresponsive in his holding cell on Sept. 20 about 2½ hours after being arrested following a reported shoplifting at a local Sam’s Club.

Officers, who are supposed to check holding cells every 20 to 30 minutes, performed CPR, and Manning was taken to Kent General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Master Corporal Mark Hoffman, a police spokesman, said Wednesday that Chief Marvin Mailey wanted to wait for autopsy and toxicology reports to be completed before announcing Manning’s death. Once he realized the reports would take longer than expected, Mailey decided to disclose Manning’s death on Wednesday, Hoffman said.

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RANDALL CHASE
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