One of the most dangerous places for criminals to find themselves in is prison. The number of convicts who meet their own deaths at the hands of fellow inmates is alarmingly high. Here's seven stories of prison killings...
In the UK
1. Leslie Bailey: Child murderer and paedophile
Paedophile Bailey, 30, also known as ‘Catweazle’ because of his bedraggled, bearded appearance, was one of a gang of child molesters. Led by notorious paedophile and suspected serial killer Sidney Cooke, the gang is suspected of killing up to nine boys during sex orgies involving children who’d been hired or kidnapped in 1984-85.
One little boy of 7 was lured away from a fair to a nearby trailer owned by Cooke, where he was gang-raped and murdered. Bailey, Cooke and two other men were involved in the heinous killing. In another shockingly depraved crime, 14-year-old Jason Swift was gang-raped and died as a result. Bailey was the only one who confessed to the crimes. Cooke and the others were charged only with Swift’s murder.
Bailey was in prison serving three life sentences for the murders of three boys when, on 19 October 1993, he was found strangled to death with a makeshift ligature by two of his inmates, Michael Cain and John Brookes. This was despite living in segregation, by choice, for his own protection. Both men were themselves serving life sentences – Cain for murder and Brookes for manslaughter.
Sidney Cooke, now 89, is still in prison in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, and there are no plans for his release.
2. Sidonio Teixeira: Child killer
On 21 June 2016, Teixeira, who was serving a life sentence for the murder of his 3-year-old daughter and the attempted murder of his 7-year-old son in 2007, was reportedly beaten to death at Long Lartin prison in Worcestershire. The murder weapon was alleged to be a fish-tank rock concealed in a sock.
The man charged with his killing during a prison workshop is Victor Castigador, a fellow inmate and murderer. Castigador is serving a whole-life tariff after dousing four people with petrol and setting light to them during a robbery. Two of his victims died, while the two survivors were left horribly scarred. At the time of writing, Castigador was on remand, awaiting his court appearance.
3. Mitchell Harrison: Rapist
Harrison, 24, was serving an indeterminate sentence at Frankland Prison, County Durham, for the rape of a 13-year old girl in 2010, when his throat was cut by two fellow inmates on 1 October 2011. Harrison was lured into a cell by convicted murderers 33-year old Michael Parr and 24-year-old Nathan Mann.
The grisly execution was carried out using plastic cutlery and a razor blade. After cutting Harrison’s throat, the pair stabbed him in the eye with a pen, then disembowelled him. They had planned to eat his liver between them, but ultimately didn’t carry out this part of the terrible act.
The crime shocked England and made headlines around the world.
4. Darren Lynn, GBH perpetrator
Lynn, 46, was serving a sentence for wounding with intent, but two fellow prisoners, Jason Gomez and Paul Wadkin, suspected him of being a child sex offender and ‘grass’. On 25 March 2015, the pair, who were incarcerated with Lynn in Swaleside Prison, in Kent, where both were serving long sentences for murder and wounding respectively, took it upon themselves to stab Lynn no less than 190 times using makeshift knives. The attack was brutal and prolonged – as well as unjustified, as there was no basis or evidence for their accusations.
Lynn’s death was discovered after Wadkin calmly told a prison officer, ‘There’s a dead body in my cell. I’ve just murdered a pervert.’ The dead man’s body was found face down on a bed, covered in a quilt.
Gomez’ sentence was subsequently increased to a whole-life term, and Wadkin will now serve a minimum of 30 years before being considered for release.
In the USA
5. Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer: Serial killer
Nicknamed the ‘The Milwaukee Cannibal’, Dahmer raped, murdered and dismembered 17 males between 1978 and 1991. Many of the killings also involved necrophilia and cannibalism. He would typically keep and preserve body parts and even entire skeletons.
At his trial, Dahmer was found to be legally sane, despite previous schizoid and psychotic diagnoses. In February 1992, he was given multiple life sentences.
Dahmer, 34, was beaten to death in prison at the Columbia Correctional Institution on 28 November 1994 by fellow inmate and convicted murderer Christopher Scarver.
6. Nicholas Anthony Rodriguez: Robber
As a relatively low-grade criminal, Rodriguez, 24, was serving eight years for robbery at California Sate Prison, Solano, when he was brutally executed on 4 May 2015. His corpse was found, disembowelled and sawn almost in two, stuffed into a dustbin, which was left in a shower stall.
The grisly discovery came nearly 15 hours after a prison riot had broken out, and was the latest killing in a string of over 160 California prison inmates since 2000. No-one has been charged with Rodriguez’ murder, but there’s said to be only one suspect – a prisoner already serving a life sentence for murder – who’s being held in segregation.
7. John J Geoghan: Paedophile
John J Geoghan was an American Roman Catholic priest in the Boston Archdiocese of Massachusetts. Over a 30-year career in six parishes, despite having previously been diagnosed with and treated for homosexual paedophilia, he was accused of the sexual abuse of more than 130 boys. He would frequently turn up at the homes of parishioners with young children at teatime and bathtime, tucking them into bed and – unbeknown to their parents – fondling them through the covers.
Geoghan was defrocked by Pope John Paul II in 1998, and, in 2002, found guilty of the indecent assault and battery of a 10-year-old boy in a swimming pool. He was sentenced to 9-10 years in prison for that crime alone. But, on 23 August 2003, inmate and convicted killer Joseph Druce, using a makeshift noose, strangled and kicked Geoghan, then 68, to death in the maximum-security Souza-Baranowski Correctional Centre in Massachussets.