Liberty County inmate dies in custody in Louisiana jail

A Liberty County inmate died in custody while being housed in the Phelps Correctional Center in Beauregard Parish, La. The inmate – Thomas E. Marshall Jr., 48, of Cleveland – was being held on a parole violation for an Aggravated Sexual Assault charge that stemmed from an alleged incident earlier this year in Horseshoe Lake Estates.

Marshall was housed in a segregated cell in the Phelps Correctional Center. He was discovered around 7 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 12, by correctional officers making rounds, according to Liberty County Sheriff’s Capt. David Meyers.

“He was found in his cell with a sheet around his neck. He had a faint pulse. EMS was called and came, and initiated CPR. They worked to revive him for a while, but unfortunately, at 8:40 a.m., his time of death was called,” Meyers said.

Marshall was being housed in Phelps Correctional Center due to overcrowding in the Liberty County Jail. Liberty County has contracts with multiple agencies around the area, including some in Louisiana, to house inmates. Marshall was being held in jail on a $500,000 bond.

An autopsy has been ordered for Marshall in Louisiana.

“It’s an in-custody death for the Phelps facility, even though he was being housed there for Liberty County,” Meyers said.

The autopsy results are expected to be ready by Friday, 15.

“We have an investigator working with their investigator. They will email us a report on their findings. Based on what they told me, it is believed this was a suicide,” Meyers said.

Marshall’s next of kin has been notified, Meyers added.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. I am Tommy Marshall’s wife and I’ve known him for most of my life and he was not guilty of the crime he was in there for he just wasn’t that kind of man and I find it really hard to believe that he took his own life ! I’m not sure exactly what happened in Louisiana but something is just not right

  2. I have been friends with Tommy Marshall for years. I know he did not sexually assault anyone he was a good guy he was a very giving and big hearted person . He helped people when they needed it. I also do not believe for one minute that he took his own life. He was not convicted of sexual assault and he never had that kind of crime on his record . People need to have some respect he is passed on . His children certainly did not need to have this posted . He is going to be missed by so many people .Tommy had hundreds of friends more than I have had in my lifetime. May he rest in peace . He will be missed dearly.

  3. I also do not believe this was suicide . And I also absolutely 💯 % believe he is an innocent man that’s been accused by a wolf in sheep’s clothing.. poor Tommy..I’m sorry for all who lost..

  4. This kind of trash and that’s what it is it cause this man to loss his life over cause some little bitch are whatever the cause was that accused him of this horrible crime should beg our father God for forgiveness and anyone involved with this situation is out for a big surprise at the end and no one knows what that is going to be but it’s not going to be good you can bet that lord have mercy on all of you Ms.Tommy you and yours are in my prayers lucinda Giacona

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