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Prison inmate found hanged in cell

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A Utah State prison inmate died Tuesday after hanging herself in her own cell, Department of Corrections officials said.

Laurin Ann Johnson was pronounced dead shortly after midnight Tuesday morning after family members decided to take her off of life support, Corrections spokesman Jack Ford said.

Johnson, who turned 44 on Tuesday, was found hanging in her cell by her cellmate about 1 p.m. at the Timpanogos Facility at Point of the Mountain, Ford said.

The prison's medical staff was able to restore shallow breathing and a faint heartbeat to Johnson before she was airlifted to University Hospital and placed on life support.

Family members decided just after midnight Tuesday to take Johnson off life support. Johnson was sent to prison Oct. 18 after a judge ordered her to undergo a diagnostic evaluation in preparation for her sentencing Friday in Heber City's 4th District Court on two counts of DUI, a third-degree felony.

She was originally scheduled to be sentenced in December, but prison officials requested more time to complete their evaluations, according to a 4th District Court docket.

Corrections officials had recommended Johnson receive probation and one year in the county jail, with credit for time served, Ford said.