A man has died in police custody in the northern Penobscot County town of Patten following his arrest at a home there, according to the Maine attorney general’s office.
The man, 46-year-old Jeremy Lau of Patten, was arrested by officers from the Maine State Police and Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office after a 911 call for help came from someone in the house, according to the attorney general’s office.
Lau died early Tuesday morning, shortly after he was arrested, the office said Wednesday.
The attorney general’s office is handling the investigation, which is standard procedure any time a person dies while in police custody, according to Nicole Sacre, a spokesperson for the office.
The Maine medical examiner’s office conducted an autopsy on Lau on Wednesday, but the office has not yet determined a cause of death and likely won’t be for six to eight weeks pending further studies, spokesperson Lindsey Chasteen said.
Lau was not a stranger to law enforcement in Penobscot County.
He was mostly recently arrested in January after he allegedly assaulted a Penobscot County sheriff’s deputy, sending the deputy to the hospital. Lau also allegedly kicked the windshield of a deputy’s cruiser, causing more than $1,000 in damage.
Lau was held at the Aroostook County Jail on two warrants and other charges following that arrest.
Patten, which is near the Penobscot-Aroostook county line, is a town of 881 people, according to the 2020 census. It does not have its own police department.