Coroner’s jury rules in 2020 deaths of Pittsburg, Antioch men while county jail inmates

By Jimmy Lee, Director of Public Affairs, Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff

Contra Costa County Sheriff-Coroner David Livingston announces that a coroner’s jury on Friday, April 30, 2021 reached a finding in the September 24, 2020 death of 32-year-old Levele Lee Williams of Pittsburg. The finding of the jury is that the death is at the hands of another person, other than by accident. Williams was injured after being assaulted by inmates at the Martinez Detention Facility. He was taken to a local hospital. Williams apparently suffered from complications during surgery and was later pronounced deceased while at the hospital.

The coroner’s jury, which heard two inquests on Friday, also reached a finding in the October 17, 2020 death of 42-year-old Gregory Lane Lynds of Antioch. The finding of the jury is that the death is a suicide. Lynds had been arrested for elder abuse and other charges. (See related article)

The coroner’s jury reached the verdicts in both inquests after hearing the testimony of witnesses called by the hearing officers, Laura Pagey and Matthew Guichard.

A coroner’s inquest, which Sheriff-Coroner David Livingston convenes in fatal incidents involving peace officers, is a public hearing during which a jury rules on the manner of a person’s death. Jury members can choose from the following four options when making their finding: accident, suicide, natural causes and ast the hands of another person, other than by accident.

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