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Okeechobee County Sheriff: Jailed Woman, and Her Unborn Child, Died of "Natural Causes"

Kaitlynn Joy Barnes.jpg
Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office
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Okeechobee Inmate Death.jpg
Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office
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Okeechobee County - Wednesday November 30, 2022: An autopsy on the body of a pregnant woman who died in the Okeechobee County Jail in September has concluded that she, and her unborn child, died from "complications of pregnancy" and her death was due to "natural causes."

19-year-old Kaitlynn Joy Barnes was found dead in her bunk during morning roll call on September 12th. The Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office released the cause of death results on Monday.

The Medical Examiner's report found that Barnes had "non-specific changes in the lungs and liver, which are suggestive indications of, but not limited to eclampsia." She was also found to have "H.E.L.L.P. syndrome," and an "acute fatty liver during pregnancy."

Eclampsia is a condition in which one or more convulsions occur in a pregnant woman suffering from high blood pressure, often followed by a coma that poses a significant threat to the health of the mother and baby. H.E.L.L.P. syndrome is a rare pregnancy complication. It is a type of preeclampsia that causes elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count.

"Each contributes to the death of Kaitlynn Joy Barnes and, ultimately, her unborn child," states the release from the Sheriff's Office.

Barnes had been in custody since May 18 charged with Transmission of Child Porn, three counts of Possession of Child Porn, and three counts of Sex Acts Involving an Animal.

Kaitlynn Joy Barnes.jpg
Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office
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