Suzanne Garbo Singletary, Director of Communications for the Mississippi Department of Corrections, said Antonio Sykes, 30, died Thursday while in the custody of MDOC and an inmate at the Houston facility.
"As with all deaths of an inmate in our custody, we are conducting an investigation," said Singletary. "At this point he appears to have died of natural causes."
Singletary would not elaborate and said federal law prevented her from releasing any details about Sykes health prior to his death.
"There was no incident," said Singletary.
Singletary said an autopsy is performed on anyone who dies in the custody of MDOC to determine an exact cause of death. She said it could take several days or weeks for that report to be returned to MDOC.
Singletary said Sykes was incarcerated for a drug related offense that occurred in Coahoma County.
Officials at the Chickasaw County Regional Jail initially refused to comment on the death.
The Chickasaw County Regional Jail opened August 12 and is one of the newest facilities in the MDOC system of regional prisons.
The facility houses medium-security state prisoners and has a capacity of 300 inmates. It employs about 50 people as guards, administrators, nurses and cooks.