Jessup inmate fatally stabbed in prison fight

February 05, 2004|By Justin Fenton | Justin Fenton,SUN STAFF

A 33-year-old inmate at the Maryland House of Correction Annex in Jessup was fatally stabbed Tuesday night during a fight in the maximum-security prison's gymnasium.

Damon Bowie died about 10:30 p.m., said Mark Vernarelli, a spokesman for the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services. He had been stabbed at least once in the neck, said Division Chief John M. Scholz, a spokesman for the Anne Arundel County Fire Department.

Anne Arundel paramedics, who were at the prison for a separate medical emergency, responded immediately to the stabbing. Bowie was flown to Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where he was pronounced dead.

Prison officials are conducting an investigation into the attack with Maryland State Police.

Vernarelli said the suspect in the killing is in prison for murder, attempted murder and four other convictions.

Prison officials would not release the suspect's name until charges had been filed, but they said he has been separated from the prison's general population.

Three corrections officers were in the immediate area and witnessed the stabbing, Vernarelli said.

A weapon was recovered, but Vernarelli said he would not describe it until the investigation is completed.

Bowie was serving life sentences for the murder of two restaurant employees shot in the back of the head in a 1989 robbery in Clinton. Bowie was originally sentenced to death, but his conviction was overturned by the Court of Appeals in September 1991. He was convicted again in April 1992 and sentenced to life without parole. His sister, Christian Bowie, was also sentenced to two life terms in the crimes.

The prison annex, which opened in 1991, is next to the Maryland House of Correction. It holds about 1,200 inmates and has the highest percentage of convicted murderers in the state's system, Vernarelli said.

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