Gregg Co. jailers arrested for falsifying gov't documents - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Gregg Co. jailers arrested for falsifying gov't documents

By Layron Livingston - bio | email

GREGG COUNTY, TX (KLTV) – The dragnet is widening in the death of an East Texas woman inside the Gregg County Jail.

A second Gregg County jailer was arrested and charged with tampering with a government document.

Brian West was booked Tuesday morning, and has been released on bond.

Tomeka Cross was arrested for similar charges on Monday, and is also out on bond, all in connection to the death of Amy Cowling. 

Cross was arrested first because authorities believe Cross falsified the "Jail Observation Log." That record showed days and times jail staff checked on Amy Cowling.

Authorities believe Cross may have had some help from fellow former jailer Brian West.

Both were fired following an investigation by the Texas Rangers, along with three other staffers.

At this point, no lawsuit has been filed, but Cowling family attorney Jarom Tefteller says these recent arrests only help validate claims Amy was neglected while she was in custody

It has been reported that Cowling was taking a heart medication, anxiety meds, and methadone. The family says she was denied those drugs inside the jail.

KLTV acquired a list of "Jail-Approved Drugs." Methadone is not on the list, but the County's doctors did give Amy "Haldol," "Dilantin," and "Lithium," to treat her anxiety and withdrawal symptoms.

Autopsy results are still pending for the 33-year-old who was found unresponsive in her cell.

"We do have a health services plan, and they have worked in the past. We just need to make sure they're followed properly," says Maxey Cerliano, Gregg County Sheriff.

Tefteller says "It's highly unusual for a 33-year-old woman who just had a happy Christmas with her family to go to jail and wind up dead, five days later."

The exact cause of Cowling's death is still unknown. Investigators are still waiting for the medical examiner's report.

Funeral services were held Monday for Amy Cowling.

Gregg County officials say the investigation is still ongoing. Further arrests are still a possibility.

Related stories:

2nd jailer arrested after death of Gregg Co. inmate
Jailer arrested, others fired after Gregg County inmate death
Woman found dead in cell at Gregg County Jail

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