Cause of death expected in ex-Stanislaus deputy's death

Authorities are closer to determining the cause of death of a former Stanislaus County sheriff's deputy who died after jailers subdued him with Tasers and pepper spray, but a forensic pathologist and a deputy coroner must review the toxicology results first, a sheriff's spokesman said Wednesday.

Craig Prescott, 38, of Modesto was in custody at the Stanislaus County Jail because police suspected him of making threats against his wife.

Stanislaus County sheriff's deputy Royjindar Singh said once they review the results from the toxicology tests, tissue samples and blood work, sheriff's officials will release Prescott's cause of death. He said it's likely officials will make that announcement by the middle of next week.

Prescott was arrested April 7 on suspicion of stalking and making threats against his wife, who had a restraining order and custody of their six children, according to court records.

His wife, Rachel, has said she had her husband arrested because she wanted him to get help for mental health problems.

Four days after his arrest, he was on life support. He was declared dead after doctors turned off machines that had kept him alive for three days.

An April 11 altercation in the downtown Modesto jail occurred as deputies tried to move Prescott from the general population to a "safety cell," so he could be monitored more closely.

Authorities said Prescott was a threat to himself and others but won't say what happened until the investigation is complete.