An inmate taken to UCSD Medical Center after a jail fight was fatally shot by a sheriff's deputy in a struggle that started when the inmate slipped out of restraints during a computer tomography scan and started swinging a chain at deputies, authorities said Sunday.
» Sign Up For Breaking News Alerts» Like Us On Facebook» Follow Us On Twitter
The San Diego County Medical Examiner's Office identified the inmate as 45-year-old Anthony Dunton.
The incident started at Central Jail in downtown San Diego at about 9:30 a.m. Saturday when deputies were about to do a routine cell search of a solo inmate's cell, according to San Diego police Capt. Terry McManus.
Deputies said the inmate did not answer the knock at his cell door, so they went inside.
McManus said the deputies were immediately attacked by the inmate, who was armed with a makeshift weapon.
"He used that weapon, a hard object that was wrapped in some type of clothing material to strike both of the deputies in the head," McManus said.
Deputies used a Taser on the inmate at least once as several deputies subdued him, police said. Deputies involved in the struggle at the jail were treated for unspecified minor injuries, police said.
The inmate was then taken to UCSD Medical Center to be treated for his injuries.
After an examination, doctors decided the man needed a CT scan. Deputies loosened his restraints to enable him to undergo a CT scan, police said.
McManus said he was able to get loose from his torso restraint, which included a chain. He said the man grabbed the chain, began swinging it over his head and attacked one of the deputies, striking him in the head.
A deputy fired a Taser dart at the man's torso and other deputies struck him with their batons, police said, but the man was able to stand up and charge at a deputy.
"The deputy, fearing for his life, removed his service weapon and fired at the suspect, striking the suspect," said McManus.
McManus would not say how many shots were fired, but he did say the man collapsed.
The man was then taken to the trauma unit for treatment but was pronounced dead once he arrived.
McManus told 10News this was not the first time the 45-year-old had been in trouble.
"He has a very violent past, both while out of custody and several incidents while in custody," he said.
Why the man was in jail was not disclosed.
The CT technician who was in the room at the time of the attack was not injured.
The deputy involved is a 7-year member of the San Diego Sheriff's Department. His name will be released at a later date, officials said.
San Diego police are in charge of investigating the shooting death, while deputies are in charge of the probe of the jail fight.
Copyright Do you have more information about this story? Click here to contact usCopyright 2012 by 10News.com. City News Service contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.