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Autopsy: MCI-Hagerstown inmate died of stab wound to neck

No one has been charged in death of 22-year-old Deavel M. Johnson

March 29, 2013|By DAN DEARTH | dan.dearth@herald-mail.com

A stab wound to the neck resulted in the death of a 22-year-old inmate who was assaulted Tuesday night at Maryland Correctional Institution-Hagerstown, according to Maryland State Police.

The cause of Deavel M. Johnson’s death was revealed during an autopsy at the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Baltimore, MSP spokesman Greg Shipley said Friday.

He said the manner of death was ruled as a homicide.

“No one has been charged at this time,” Shipley said.

MSP investigators have concluded initial interviews with inmates and correctional officers who were at the scene when Johnson was stabbed, Shipley said.

“There may be additional interviews as the investigation continues,” he said.

Johnson was noticed standing near a bunk bed with blood on him as a correctional officer was conducting a head count at about 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to a state police news release.

Shipley said Wednesday that the incident occurred in a dormitory unit at the prison with 32 beds and about 64 inmates.

Correctional officers performed first aid on Johnson and took him to the prison dispensary, police said. Johnson then was taken to Meritus Medical Center east of Hagerstown, where he was pronounced dead at about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Shipley said MSP Forensic Science Division crime scene technicians and investigators from the MSP Homicide Unit and Criminal Enforcement Division were called to the prison to investigate.

According to state prison officials, Johnson was incarcerated in 2011 and was serving a four-year sentence for first-degree burglary.

Johnson’s death was the first homicide at the state prison complex south of Hagerstown in more than nine years, according to information provided by Mark Vernarelli, a spokesman for the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

Vernarelli said the most recent murder occurred in 2004 at Maryland Correctional Training Center.

MCI-H, Maryland Correctional Training Center and Roxbury Correctional Institution make up the state prison complex off Md. 65 south of Hagerstown.

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