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Pinal Co. Detention Officer found dead in cell after sexual exploitation arrest

Posted at 7:10 PM, Jan 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-25 00:21:37-05

Nearly two weeks after being arrested in Mesa, accused of sexual misconduct with a minor, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office says a Mesa man has been found dead in his jail cell.

MCSO says 48-year-old Robert Hunter, a Pinal County Detention Officer, was facing 20 felony counts of sexual misconduct with a minor . Hunter is accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a 15-year-old boy that he met on a dating app.

Hunter was placed on administrative leave following his arrest.

MCSO says Hunter was found during a routine security check and was unresponsive. Medical aid was administered but was not successful.

"Our primary responsibility in the jails is for the safety of our inmates and employees," said Sheriff Paul Penzone. "My staff and I will ensure all policies and procedures were followed in this instance, and as always look for any opportunities to improve."

MCSO says Hunter was housed alone in his cell because of the charges he was facing and his status as a former law enforcement employee.