Maryland State Police are investigating the apparent murder of a state prison inmate found dead in his cell early today in Anne Arundel County.
The victim is identified as David I. Stephenson, 44, who was incarcerated at the Jessup Correctional Institution in Jessup, Md. He was pronounced dead at the scene by emergency medical personnel.
A suspect has been identified, but his name is being withheld until charges are filed. The suspect is an inmate at the Jessup Correctional Institution.
Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigators responded to the Jessup Correctional Institution to conduct the investigation at the request of Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services officials. Maryland State Police Criminal Enforcement Division investigators and Forensic Sciences Division crime scene technicians responded to assist. Assistance was also provided by JCI correctional officers and DPSCS Internal Investigations Unit investigators.
The preliminary investigation indicates that shortly after 3:00 a.m. today, a correctional officer was making cell checks and observed the window to a cell was covered up. Additional officers were summoned and they entered the cell.
When officers entered the cell, they found the victim lying on the floor. The victim was unresponsive and had sustained obvious trauma. Emergency medical personnel were immediately summoned. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene. Also in the cell was the victim’s cellmate. He was examined, but did not require medical treatment.
The victim’s body was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore. An autopsy has been scheduled to determine the cause and manner of death.
A motive remains unclear at this time. Investigators are working to determine how and why the victim was killed. The Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney’s Office has been briefed on the investigation and will be coordinating the pending charges against the suspect.