Detectives with the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit are currently investigating a death that occurred on the property of the Charlotte County Jail. A deceased person was located during morning patrols of the campus by jail personnel. The deceased person was located in the bench area of jail visitation, which is an outlying building from the jail.
The benches are frequently used as a waiting area for recently released detainees or people waiting to pick up pending releases. At this time it does not appear that there was any other person involved in the death.
Investigators are currently on scene with members of the Forensics Unit. Additional information will be released as the investigation progresses and next of kin is notified.
Jail visitation will be closed until the scene is cleared. Those wishing to attend visitation should plan for after 1:00pm.
MEDIA – Staging is at the entrance to the Charlotte County Jail on Airport Road. Please do not utilize the parking lot at the Charlotte County Emergency Operations Center (adjacent to jail property). They have requested their parking lots stay clear for personnel attending training.
Update 7/31/19 – The deceased subject is Janice Lynn Ridgeway (DOB 4/29/64) of Port Charlotte. Janice Ridgeway was arrested for Battery on 7/29/19 at 1:37am and her release was processed (bond) at 12:25pm on 7/29/19. Upon her release, it is believed at this time she stayed on the property through the evening until she was discovered deceased. Her next of kin has been notified. The Medical Examiner will be conducting an autopsy to determine the cause of death. An investigation is still ongoing.