Husband of New York Mother of 8 Wants Answers on her Death Inside a New York Prison Cell

"I don't know what happened," husband Herman Turner said about her death. "They won't give me a time of death ... what happened ... nothing." - Joe Marino/New York Daily News
“I don’t know what happened,” husband Herman Turner said about her death. “They won’t give me a time of death … what happened … nothing.” – Joe Marino/New York Daily News

A 43-year-old Mount Vernon mother of eight mysteriously died in police custody Monday — and her heartbroken husband wants to know why. 

Herman Turner, 49, waited all day Monday for his wife, Raynette, to be arraigned on a shoplifting charge at the Mount Vernon criminal court.

When she didn’t appear, he went home, only to be met by two detectives who broke the bad news: Raynette had died in a holding cell.

“I went blank … It was a complete shock,” Turner said, recalling the horrific news. “She was the best. She was very loving … She always loved to laugh. She was a fun, happy lady.”

Turner said their children — the oldest 21, the youngest just 8 — were “completely distraught.”

“I don’t know what happened,” he said about her death. “They won’t give me a time of death … what happened … nothing.”

His attorney Osvoldo Gonzalez said Raynette had been in custody since Friday because court is not in session in Mount Vernon on the weekends.

Details of her arrest were not available, although a Mount Vernon spokeswoman said it was Raynette’s third shoplifting arrest in recent weeks.

Over the last four days, Raynette —who recently had bariatric surgery and suffered from hypertension, according to officials — repeatedly said she was not feeling well and asked to see a doctor, Gonzalez claimed.

“She was isolated in the police station for four days and was still complaining about needing medical attention and received nothing,” he said. “The hospital is directly across the street, but apparently her requests for help were ignored.”

Mount Vernon Police Captain Edward Adinaro refuted Gonzalez’s claim and said Raynette received medical care at the hospital across the street on Sunday evening at 7:30 p.m.

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Source: New York Daily News | THOMAS TRACY

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