Polk County Sheriff’s Office investigating inmate death

PCSO investigating the death of an inmate

POLK COUNTY, FLA. (WFLA) Polk County Sheriff’s detectives are investigating the death of an inmate at the South County Jail in Frostproof.

44 year old Inmate Javier Perdoma Medina has been charged with First Degree Murder after deputies found the victim, 35 year old Joseph Dawes, with a sheet tied around his neck attached to the top bunk.

A second sheet was placed on top of the bunk to conceal the victim’s body. Following a fight with another inmate, Medina had been moved into a cell with Dawes cell.

Other inmates reported to jail personnel about a fight between Medina and Dawes. Deputies arrived at the cell to find Dawes near death.

Dawes was taken to Lake Wales Medical Center then to Lakeland Regional Health Center where he later died of his injuries.

After being interviewed by PCSO detectives, Medina attempted to commit suicide by drowning himself in a toilet AND then tried to cause brain damage by jumping and falling on his head.

Medina was arrested on August 28, 2015 on an outstanding warrants out of Osceola County for failure to appear for an expired driver’s license and lewd/lascivious molestation with sexual battery.

Most recently, Dawes was arrested for violating his probation on June 25th. He had 34 prior arrests in Polk County

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