A prisoner in Spain has been described as “exceptional” after apparently dying and coming back to life in remarkable fashion. 29-year-old Gonzalo Montoya Jiménez was in a body bag in a hospital mortuary, after being declared dead by three doctors, when he woke up.
He had spent a short time in a cold room in the mortuary and his body had marks on it in preparation for autopsy, but he shocked mortuary workers and woke on Sunday, then demanded to see his wife.
“They had already marked the body to open it with the scalpel,” relatives said.
According to local media, he woke just hours before the post-mortem examination was due to be undertaken. Scientists are calling it “an exceptional case of apparent death”. Authorities told Mr Jiménez’s family that the 29-year-old was believed to have died in his cell at around 8am after he failed to show for the prison’s morning count. He was placed in the most dangerous section of the prison population.
He was found slumped in a chair after complaining of feeling ill the day before. Officials said he was cyanotic — the purplish discolouration in skin that appears after death. He also appeared to be suffering rigor mortis. There were no visible signs of foul play and a pulse couldn’t be found. Despite signs to revive him, he was declared dead.
He was placed in a body bag where he “resurrected” on the autopsy table after doctors saw the “corpse move” and heard him “snoring” and “wheezing” at around noon.
“Forensic doctors began to hear noises coming from inside the bag. Montoya was not dead. Quite the opposite,” reported El Espanol. “The forensic [pathologist] proceeded to open the bag and found the inmate still alive.”
When he woke, the first words he uttered were about his wife, and asked if he could see her. The family of the prisoner is furious with prison officials and are “convinced” just one prison doctor examined his body while the two others simply signed the death certificate.
Experts suspect a catalepsy “may be related to this unusual case”. Catalepsy is a condition where a person can be mistaken for dead because their vital signs are slowed to a point where it is almost imperceptible. He is now in intensive care at a hospital in Oviedo,