Subscribe for 33¢ / day

An inmate of the Burleigh-Morton County Detention Center died this week after time at a local hospital.

Maj. Steve Hall said emergency services transported inmate Michael Lang, 47, of Mandan, to the hospital for a medical reason around 5:30 a.m. Sept. 6 at the jail. Lang had been housed in a minimum security dormitory setting, where he was sitting on his bunk to eat breakfast before staff intervened for the medical situation, according to Hall.

"It was a medical event that wasn't caused by anybody else," Hall said. "He was having difficulty breathing, and we had to clear his airway and perform CPR."

No other inmates were involved, Hall said. Security footage reportedly captured the episode but Hall declined to comment without a medical report or authorization.

Lang, who was accused of luring minors, was breathing on his own when he left the jail, Hall also said. At that time, custody reverted to the Morton County Sheriff's Office, who arrested Lang in August.

The hospital later released Lang on his own recognizance, but Lang remained there. He died Sept. 13, said Maxine Herr, Morton County's public information officer.

Lang's cause of death wasn't available Friday. Hall said he hadn't seen a medical report.

"When they leave our custody, we're not entitled to that information," he said, including to which hospital Lang was admitted.

Herr said Lang's death is under investigation and medical information cannot be released now.

An outside investigation will examine the matter to see if any improprieties took place, which is typical practice. Hall said the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation will conduct a report to be sent to the jail's oversight committee through jail inspections, which is under the state department of corrections.

Lang had been set for a preliminary hearing on Sept. 25. He had been charged with Class B felony luring minors by computer.

Defense attorney Steven Balaban did not immediately return a phone call for comments.

Subscribe to Daily Headlines

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Reach Jack Dura at 701-250-8225 or