Released by Captain Mike Claxton with the Gregg County Sheriff's Office:
GREGG COUNTY, TX - A Texas Ranger and Sheriff's investigators are investigating a custodial death this morning of Brett Michael Birdwell in the Gregg County South Jail Facility. Birdwell was found by Jailers at 5:25 am unresponsive. The death is being worked as a suicide.
"Birdwell was arrested on May 17, 2008 on a Capital Murder warrant charging him with the deaths of Neil and June Killingsworth of Longview", according to Captain Mike Claxton. Birdwell was in a separation cell at the time of his discovery and had been in custody for 502 days.
"Birdwell was discovered unresponsive this morning by Jailers who were performing a regular walk and visual inspection of the housing units in the facility", Claxton said. "Our on-duty medical staff found no signs of life during an assessment", Claxton added. Birdwell had been indicted by a Gregg County grand jury and was in-custody awaiting an expected trial in early 2010.