A 61-year-old Baton Rouge man accused of beating another to death in a dispute over a pair of shoes died earlier this week in Parish Prison of natural causes, according to the East Baton Rouge Coroner's Office.
Edward Jones, of 1424 Cardinal St., died in jail Monday from heart disease associated with diabetes, said Dr. William "Beau" Clark, the coroner.
Jones was being held at the jail on a count of second-degree murder for allegedly beating Val Lachica on August 19 after blaming the man for swiping a pair of shoes. Lachica, 58, died Sept. 4 from injuries sustained during the beating, according to police reports and the coroner.
A police report says that Jones woke Lachica around 6 a.m. at 1572 Gwen Drive and sat on top of Lachica as Lachica lay with his back on the floor. According to the report, Jones — who's described as physically larger than Lachica — then beat the man unconscious.
Baton Rouge police officers arrested Jones on Sept. 21 and booked him into Parish Prison, where he remained until his death on Monday. He was held in lieu of $250,000 bail.
It appeared from court files available online that Jones had not yet been indicted in Lachica's killing.