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Blotter: Deceased jail inmate died by hanging herself, officials say

Stormye Murphey, the 30-year-old woman who was found dead last week in the Denton County Jail, died by hanging herself, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office.

The office released her official cause of death — asphyxia by hanging — on Monday. The death was ruled a suicide.

Murphey was initially booked into the jail on Aug. 13 on a Denton police charge of assault causing bodily injury. According to Sheriff Tracy Murphree, she had a "medical episode" at the jail on Aug. 14, the day before she was found dead, and was taken to Medical City Denton and released back to the jail the same day. 

She was then placed inside a cell in one of the medical units at the jail, where a detention officer found her unresponsive on the morning of Aug. 15, Murphree said.

She had been the only person inside the cell, he said.

Denton man sentenced to federal prison on child pornography charges

Denton man Joel Linden was sentenced to 50 years in federal prison last week on charges of production and distribution of child pornography.

U.S. District Judge Marcia Crone sentenced the 29-year-old man to 360 months in federal prison for the production of child pornography and 240 months in federal prison for distributing child pornography, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Texas. He will serve the sentences concurrently.

Linden was arrested Nov. 8, 2016, two days after police searched his home, which was in the 3800 block of Titan Trail in north Denton, according to public records.

Police received information that someone was sending pornography from the residence using an internet app, the release said. At the home, police recovered digital media that contained child pornography, including images and videos that show Linden sexually abusing a child younger than 12 years old, according to the release.

Police believed he produced some of the images and videos and distributed them to people online.

Other reports

3000 block of Olympia Drive — A 23-year-old man was arrested Sunday morning after Denton police received a report that a woman was taken against her will in a stolen Ford Explorer from a McDonald's parking lot.

Brandon Mccall was taken to Denton City Jail on charges of unlawful restraint and assault family violence, according to police.

Denton police received the information from a witness Saturday afternoon and investigated through the night, according to Denton police spokesman Bryan Cose.

At first, officers couldn't find the Explorer, which police confirmed was stolen based on the license plate number. Denton police asked surrounding law enforcement agencies to keep a lookout for the SUV.

Later Saturday evening, a resident in the 3000 block of Olympia Drive said the vehicle was sitting behind a nearby building. Responding officers confirmed it was the same Ford Explorer, but they couldn't find the woman until the overnight hours, Cose said.

Police spoke to the woman and eventually arrested the suspect early Sunday.

400 block of South Carroll Boulevard — A 52-year-old man attempted to throw a clear baggie of methamphetamine on the ground Sunday after police asked him what was inside his pockets, according to a police report.

Officers were patrolling the area around Big D Food Store on Carroll Boulevard when they came upon two people sitting in a parked car at about 7:30 a.m., according to a police report. They discovered the driver had two active Lewisville police warrants and asked him to get out of the vehicle.

The charges on the warrants were failure to provide proof of financial responsibility and failure to report a change of address. Once they asked him about the contents of his pockets, the man tried to pull out the baggie of meth and throw it on the ground, police said.

He was later arrested on the warrants, as well as a new charge of possession of a controlled substance, and taken to Denton City Jail.


From 7 a.m. Friday to 7 a.m. Monday:

The Denton County Sheriff's Office handled 2,458 service and officer-initiated calls for the agencies it serves, and 122 people were booked into Denton County Jail. 

Denton police handled 466 calls for service and made 27 arrests. 

Denton firefighters responded to 86 medical calls, nine vehicle accidents and one passenger vehicle fire.