Polk County Sheriff’s Office detectives are investigating the death of a Polk County Jail Inmate that occurred on Monday, April 24, 2023, at Advent Health Sebring Hospital.
The inmate who died is 43-year-old Doroteo Martinez-Castro of Haines City. On Saturday, April 22, 2023, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office arrested Martinez-Castro for DUI Manslaughter (F2) and Driving While License Suspended/Revoked and Causing Death (F3). He also received a citation for driving on the wrong side of the road.
PCSO deputies and Polk County Fire Rescue were dispatched at about 10:55 p.m.to the crash at the intersection of US 17/92 and Lee Jackson Highway North, just north of the city of Haines City.
The victim, a 23-year old Hispanic male from Davenport, and Martinez-Castro were both transported to a local hospital. The victim passed away from his injuries shortly after he arrived.
Martinez-Castro was driving a black 2009 Honda Accord, traveling north on Lee Jackson Hwy when he entered into the southbound lane of US 17/92 at the V-intersection. The Honda collided head-on with the victim’s silver 2009 Toyota Prius which was traveling south on US 17/92.
Multiple cans of Modelo beer were found in Martinez-Castro’s vehicle. He also admitted to a detective that he drank multiple beers and Crown Royal whisky a short time before the crash. He was transported to a local hospital where he was treated for an ankle injury, and his blood was drawn. His blood samples were sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for additional testing. Upon his release from the hospital during the early morning hours of Sunday, April 23rd, he was booked in to the Polk County Jail and then transferred to the medical dorm for his ankle injury.
Martinez-Castro, who is in the United States illegally from Mexico, only had a learner’s permit to drive, but it was suspended in 2019. He was arrested by the Haines City Police Department in 2019 on traffic-related charges, and deported back to Mexico twice since that arrest. His criminal history includes four prior traffic-related misdemeanor arrests. The PCSO notified the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration & Customs Enforcement of this most recent arrest upon his being booked into the Polk County Jail.
According to the investigation so far, Martinez-Castro was being monitored by deputies and medical staff throughout Monday morning, April 24th. Deputies checked on him every 14-15 minutes. When his food tray was delivered at 10:40 a.m., a deputy noticed he was sitting in his wheelchair unresponsive. Deputies and medical staff immediately began CPR until he was transported to Sebring. He was declared deceased at the hospital at 11:31 a.m.
An initial autopsy conducted on Tuesday, April 25, 2023, showed that Martinez-Castro died as a result of crash-related internal injuries. Final autopsy results are pending toxicology reports.
The investigation is ongoing. It is standard PCSO policy for four separate, independent investigations. The PCSO completes a death investigation and administrative (internal) investigation. The Polk County Medical Examiner conducted the autopsy to determine the manner and cause of death. All the investigative findings are forwarded to the State Attorney’s Office for their investigation and review.