Details Unclear in 29-Year-Old’s Death in Sheriff’s Custody

Essex Sheriff Frank G. Cousins Jr.

Authorities have yet to reveal details of an investigation into the death of a Haverhill man Thursday in Bridgewater while in custody of Essex County Sheriff’s Department officers outside a Department of Corrections (DOC) Alcohol and Substance Abuse facility.

Samuel Dunn, 29, of Haverhill, was pronounced dead early Thursday at a Taunton hospital, shortly after he was found unresponsive inside an Essex County Sheriff’s transport van parked outside the Bridgewater facility, according to a spokesperson for Essex Sheriff Frank G. Cousins Jr. Dunn reportedly was taken to Bridgewater Wednesday night under a civil commitment order out of Newburyport District Court and arrived while the DOC detox facility was under a lockdown due to “a disturbance.” The van was parked for several hours while Dunn waited inside for the facility lockdown to end.

Inquiries by WHAV to Carrie Kimball-Monahan, spokesperson for Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, were referred to the office of Plymouth District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz. A spokesperson there was not immediately available when telephoned by WHAV.

Last May, WHAV reported Dunn was arrested by Haverhill police on a drug dealing charge. Police charged him with distribution of a class A drug when arrested at 9:30 p.m., Friday, May 8, on East Broadway. Dunn was scheduled to face trial in the Haverhill District Court case March 22.