Mother: Son Overdosed on K2 While in Arkansas Prison

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - When your only possessions come in a cardboard box you realize everything, even down to the letters, is precious.

"I guess me and him was thinking the same thing because I was saving all his letters that he wrote me," says Sharon Benton.

Benton's son died earlier this year. She's looking through what DeAngelo Moore left behind.

"He was laying in the hospital bed with machines all hooked on him," says Benton.

Her 26-year-old son was taken to a Memphis hospital on February 10th after she says he overdosed on synthetic marijuana, commonly known as K2, inside the East Arkansas Regional Unit.

"My daughter laid her head on his chest and felt his heartbeat," says Benton.

Moore died days later. She says she still did not know why he ended up in the hospital until someone from the hospital told her.

"Him and other inmates were caught on camera smoking synthetic marijuana. They don't know if he put himself back in the bed or if inmates put him in a bed and covered him up," says Benton.

According to the Arkansas Times, K2 incidents in Arkansas prisons are skyrocketing. More than 700 incidents have been reported through July, 2017, that's up hundreds since 2014. Out of all the incidents reported this year, 206 come from the East Arkansas Regional Unit, more than any other prison in the state.

"He basically helped my mom raise me," says Moore's sister Lasherika Anderson.

Anderson says she still had dreams to fulfill with her brother.

"He just wanted to always see me grow up and become the bright person that he knew I could," says Anderson.

Still with questions, Benton says she'll keep calling everyday.

"She'll [Warden's Assistant] take a message, never return my call," says Benton.

Moore was sentenced to the Arkansas Department of Correction (ADC) in 2015 on sexual assault charges.

ADC officials released the following statement:

"Inmate Deangelo Moore #659893 was transported to an area hospital on Thursday, February 9, 2017, where he was later pronounced dead on Wednesday, February 15, 2017.  The death of Inmate Moore was referred to the Arkansas State Police on  Friday, February 17, 2017, following the completion a unit-level investigation. A post-mortem examination was later conducted by the Medical Examiner's Office. The Department is precluded from releasing specific information relating to an inmate's medical treatment, to include the results of an examination by the Medical Examiner's Office.

The Department continuously takes steps to reduce the presence of contraband, to include drugs, in its facilities. Efforts to educate the inmate population and general public on the dangers of K2 continue. These efforts include signage throughout the interior and exterior of every facility along with educational videos which are shown in the barracks. The Department also maintains various search and surveillance methods that are both active and passive. Finally, in August of this year, the Department revised its inmate correspondence policy in direct response to the use of mail to introduce drugs in to facilities."

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