PHOENIX – An official autopsy says a New York woman died after accidentally strangling herself while in police custody after being arrested during an airport layover in Phoenix.
The Maricopa County Medical Examiner's Office says 45-year-old Carol Anne Gotbaum also was acutely intoxicated on alcohol and prescription drugs when she died in a police holding room at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport on Sept. 28.
Gotbaum had been arrested on a disorderly conduct charge after she was kept off a connecting flight that was to bring her to Tucson, where she was to enter an alcohol treatment center.
Authorities have said that Gotbaum, who was handcuffed and shackled to a bench in an airport holding room, may have accidentally strangled herself. Police have said they followed proper procedures when dealing with her.