Woman dies after having heart attack in El Paso County jail cell

Erica Klag (Credit: Colorado Springs Police Department)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) While waiting in a holding cell after an arrest, a woman suffered a heart attack.

Springs police say she later died.

According to police, 40-year-old Erica Klag was a passenger in a car involved in a traffic stop on Tuesday morning near Academy Park Loop and Academy Boulevard.

Officers said Klag had a warrant out for her arrest for failing to appear on traffic charges.

While being taken to jail, Klag told police she might have a seizure. Officers asked for medical help. However, she didn't have a seizure and was then medically cleared, police said.

Klag was taken to the El Paso County jail, where she was transferred into the custody of the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.

After being placed in a holding cell at the jail, police said she had a heart attack and required medical attention from jail staff.

Klag was taken to Memorial Hospital in critical condition.

Police said on Thursday afternoon, Klag died "as a result of her medical condition."

Worried that Klag might die, and because she was in the custody of jail staff, the Colorado Springs Police Department Violent Crimes Unit began an investigation into the handling of Klag before her death.

"The investigation revealed that during the contact with CSPD and EPSO, minimal force was used to restrain Ms. Klag. This included handcuffing, a spit sock being placed over her head due to her attempts to spit on officers, and escort holds to stop Ms. Klag from thrashing about while being walked into CJC," said CSPD Sgt. Joel Kern.

The district attorney's office was also involved in the investigation, police said.

Police added, while the investigation is ongoing, "there has been no indication of any excessive use of force on the part of any officers or deputies involved in the response."

The investigation also revealed that Klag reportedly had several "small baggies of methamphetamine" on and inside her body, according to police.

An autopsy was planned for Friday.