Greg Ort says 37-year-old Jerry Dillinger was in a single cell, meaning he did not have a cellmate. Dillinger was found unresponsive in that cell last night.
“At approximately 11:30 p.m., during a routine unit check – and our officers check cells about every 30 minutes in this particular unit – Dillinger was discovered unresponsive and hanging from a bed sheet that was tied to a pole on his bed,” Ort said.
Dillinger was pronounced dead at University of Iowa Hospitals less than an hour later. Dillinger was arrested in mid-December for the shooting deaths of his ex-sister-in-law and her boyfriend in southwest Iowa.
Loretta Dillinger’s body was found in a pond near Lorimor, while Michael Robinson’s body was discovered buried in Thayer. At his first court appearance in January, Jerry Dillinger unexpectedly pleaded guilty to both murders and was sentenced to life in prison. Ort says Dillinger did not demonstrate any early warning signs of suicide.
“We have a protocol in place if anyone demonstrates a suicidal intent…if they talk about it or even if they have a history of it when they first come in, there’s a protocol for that,” Ort said. “Mr. Dillinger did not demonstrate any of those indications at all.”
(Reporting by Jordan Armstrong, KSIB, Creston)