Cumberland Times-News

Local News

February 11, 2013

Charges pending against WCI slaying suspect

CRESAPTOWN — Homicide investigators are continuing to investigate the death of a 19-year-old inmate who was assaulted at the Western Correctional Institution in November.

The victim, Jerod Pridget, was assaulted in his cell Nov. 26. He was pronounced dead two days later at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.

Investigation into the assault was performed by the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

An autopsy determined that Pridget’s death was a homicide caused by blunt-force trauma. An investigation was initiated then by the Maryland State Police Homicide Unit.

Police said Monday that a suspect has been identified and charges are pending presentation of the matter to an Allegany County jury.

The suspect will be identified upon being charged.

The investigation showed that shortly before noon Nov. 26, an inmate contacted correctional officers and said his cellmate, identified as Pridget, had “an accident.”

Correctional officers responded to the cell and found Pridget unresponsive with what appeared to be injuries to his head.

Medical staff provided emergency care and the victim was taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center prior to being transferred to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

Forensic evidence was collected from the victim’s cell the day of the assault by Maryland State Police crime scene technicians at the request of DPSCS investigators.

Examination of the evidence by the Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division Laboratory is continuing.

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