The deceased was identified as K Karthick, of Kempatti Colony in the city. A notorious ganja peddler, he has at least 13 murder, attempt to murder, robbery, ganja peddling cases pending against him with the Big Bazaar Street police.
According to a police officer, Karthick was detained under the Goondas Act and lodged in the city central prison, from where he came out on bail a few weeks ago.
On Monday evening, the Big Bazaar Street police got a tip that Karthick has resumed ganja sales at TK Market and picked him up from the spot with 1kg and 250g of contraband. He was subsequently taken to the Big Bazaar Street police station for interrogation.
“We were planning to produce him before a judicial magistrate at night, but Karthick suffered an attack of fits and fell unconscious. We immediately took him to the Coimbatore Medical College and Hospital (CMCH), where doctors declared him brought dead,” the officer said.
The police informed his family members, who rushed to the CMCH and accused police of torturing him to death.
Police, meanwhile, said Karthick used to hurt himself whenever they make an attempt to arrest him. “Recently, he had climbed atop a tree on the central prison premises alleging harassment by prison authorities,” the officer said.
Postmortem was conducted in the presence of judicial magistrate Iniya Karunagaran and later the body was handed over to his relatives. Further investigation is on.