South Carolina (John Monk-The State) – The convicted child molester who was strangled to death over the weekend while serving a 20-year sentence at McCormick Correctional Institution was mutilated and his body went undiscovered for some time, possibly for hours, state officials said Tuesday afternoon. Punishment fit the crime, in my book!
His cellmate, John Michael New, 32, who is serving a life sentence for hostage-taking, was charged with murder, according to an arrest warrant made public by the S.C. Law Enforcement Division. Sucks when you piss off a guy with nothing left to lose.
New is charged with killing Ricky Cooper, 49, who was found dead late Saturday morning in a common area in front of a shower near his cell, according to prison officials. Hold on a second there… he was in a common area and went undiscovered for hours? Does that sound right?
State Sen. Mike Fair, R-Greenville, chairman of the Senate Corrections and Penology Committee, said his staff had spoken with prison officials and learned that Cooper was mutilated.
Fair also said it had taken officials some length of time before they learned that Cooper was dead.
“I just assume he was hidden somewhere,” Fair said. “He was missing for some length of time before they found him.” Hidden… in a common area near his cell… Sounds like finding his body was a top priority.
Fair said the fact that it apparently took an unusual amount of time to locate a murder victim’s body in the maximum security McCormick prison points to the need for more prison staff. Hahaha! I guess so!
Fair did not know details of the mutilation or exactly how long Cooper had been dead before being discovered.
Prison spokesman Clark Newsom confirmed that McCormick state prison was understaffed, but declined to give exact numbers because of “security reasons.”
“We are understaffed, but not seriously,” Newsom said. Yeah, its not like prisoner’s bodies go missing for DAYS or anything.
Newsom also refused to comment on the mutilation and how long it took for the killing to be discovered. He referred those questions to SLED, saying that agency was investigating the death.
SLED officials, citing the investigation, declined to comment on circumstances surrounding the death.
Efforts to reach McCormick County Coroner Faye Puckett were unsuccessful.
New, of Lee County, is serving a life sentence for what the Corrections website describes as “taking hostages by inmate.” Corrections officials could not reached to elaborate.
New and Cooper were cellmates and alone during the incident, an affidavit attached to SLED’s warrant said.
There are apparently no other suspects.
“After being questioned, New admitted that he killed Cooper by strangulation,” the affidavit said.
An autopsy confirmed Cooper died by “manual strangulation,” the affidavit said.
Cooper, of Graniteville, was sentenced in March 2009 in Aiken County.
According to news accounts at the time, Cooper was charged with numerous counts of sexually assaulting a boy and girl, both under the age of 12. The incidents went on for years, according to warrants. Sounds to me like the inmate who killed this guy was TOO merciful.
The McCormick prison, in McCormick County, is a Level 3 high-security prison. It currently has 1,246 inmates – 124 over its normal capacity of 1,142, Newsom said.
Some 124 two-man cells have triple beds to accommodate the excess inmates, he said. Hey, it’s not a hotel suite, its PRISON!
It is not clear exactly how the murder happened. In such prisons, inmates are “closely supervised and their activities and movement within the institution are highly restricted,” according to the Department of Corrections’ website.
Fair said that the killing – no matter what Cooper’s crimes were – was a tragic event. “Murder is still murder,” he said, “no matter what our perception of the victim is.” Please, if the state does it – its JUSTICE, if a con does it its murder. Whatever… The sick fuck got what he deserved.
Rep. Leon Howard, D-Richland, who chairs the House committee overseeing the Department of Corrections, said he will speak to Fair about the possibility of a legislative audit into staffing and security at the prison.
“But we don’t want to interfere with any ongoing investigation obviously,” Howard said. Investigation? You have the body, you have the perp, you even have the confession. What is left to investigate?
Well here you go America, another kid raping, shitstain, is no longer our problem! Beautiful, isn’t it? With state governments shedding public sector employees in order to save money and pay off their debt, I forsee this sort of thing becoming more and more common. See what happens when you mess with kids, you sick assholes?
No more cushy sentences, pretty soon, no more protective custody… There isn’t going to be any one left to protect the scum who prey on children, but as far as I’m concerned, there shouldn’t be. Pretty soon, these scumbags are going to find themselves surrounded by guys who are serving life sentences, and don’t give a shit. Hey, I’m good with that. One less child molester taking up our air, tax dollars, and resources, sounds just fine to me.