Prisoner declared dead by doctors wakes up shortly before autopsy

Man declared dead wakes up before autopsy | Photo credit: BCCL


  • Gonzalo Montoya Jimenez has been pronounced dead by three doctors, reports say
  • He woke up shortly before his autopsy at the Institute of Forensic Medicine
  • Following the shocking discovery, he was transferred to another hospital for treatment.

A prisoner who was bagged and pronounced dead woke up just before medics prepared to open him for an autopsy, according to reports.

Gonzalo Montoya Jimenez was taken to the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Oviedo in a bag after police guards found him unconscious at the Central Penitentiary of Asturias in Villabona, Spain.

Interestingly, the man’s family had been notified of his “death” as part of the standard prion procedure that applies when an inmate is declared dead, according to a spokesperson for the Spanish prison service.

The spokesperson said two doctors concluded Jimenez had “clinical signs of death” following an early morning call.

“The court sent a medical examiner who is the one who actually confirmed his death,” the spokesperson said.

According to the spokesperson, two physicians on duty confirmed that Jimenez was dead, and a medical examiner later confirmed the same.

Jimenez was pronounced dead after complaining of not feeling well that day. Doctors concluded that his body showed signs of cyanosis, discoloration of the skin due to lack of oxygen, according to reports.

But after he was taken to a hospital morgue, some people had their hearts snoring inside Jimenez’s body bag to realize he was alive.

“The medical examiners began to hear noises coming from inside the bag. Montoya was not dead. Quite the contrary. [pathologist] proceeded to open the bag and found the inmate still alive,” reported El Spaniard.

Jimenez is said to have woken up moments before the autopsy because his body already had pen marks from where the planned incisions were to take place.

Following the shocking mistake by doctors, Jimenez was transferred to another hospital, where he is believed to be in stable condition.

In a similar incident, a Kenyan man awoke in the morgue as workers prepared to embalm and drain blood from his body. The man, identified as Peter Kigen, 32, regained consciousness and began screaming inside the morgue when a staff member cut open his leg.

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