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Times Free Press files / Hays State Prison in Trion, Ga.

The coroner in Chattooga County confirmed an inmate died at Hays State Prison on Saturday night and a homicide investigation is underway.

Chattooga County Coroner Earle Rainwater said an inmate died on Saturday but could not confirm the inmate's identity because he wasn't sure if the next of kin had been contacted.

"It was a homicide," Rainwater told the Times Free Press on Tuesday. "That's all I'm able to be forthcoming about right now."

Joan Heath, director of public affairs with the Georgia Department of Corrections, also confirmed a death at the prison over the weekend.

"However, because the incident is under investigation, we are unable to provide additional details," Heath said in an email Tuesday.

Rainwater said he is awaiting results from an autopsy and could not say what the cause of death was. He also said the Georgia Bureau of Investigation will be conducting the investigation.

Contact Patrick Filbin at pfilbin@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6476. Follow him on Twitter @PatrickFilbin.

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