CHARLESTON - An inmate at the Southeast Correctional Center was pronounced dead, apparently of natural causes.
Doran Pettis, 38, was in the recreation area Friday when a problem was first noticed, according to Chuck Dwyer, SECC superintendent.
"He had been playing basketball," Dwyer said. "Apparently he want over to the bench and then he kind of keeled over onto the floor. ... Preliminary indications are heart failure but we don't have the official report back yet."
A medical emergency was called, prison staff responded first and then Pettis was sent by ambulance to Missouri Delta Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 4:08 p.m. As required by DOC policy, an autopsy will be performed to determine the exact cause of death.
Pettis was serving a 15-year sentence for voluntary manslaughter and armed criminal action. He was received by the DOC on Feb. 27, 2001, after being sentenced in St. Louis City.