Autopsy Set For Ohio Killer Found Hanged In Cell


An autopsy is expected to be performed Monday for a condemned Ohio killer found hanged in his death row cell just days before his execution.

Prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith says 44-year-old Billy Slagle was found at about 5 a.m. Sunday at the Chillicothe Correctional Institution south of Columbus. He was declared dead about one hour later.

He was sentenced to die for fatally stabling neighbor Mari Anne Pope in 1987 during a Cleveland burglary while two young children were present.

An attorney for Slagle says the defense had hoped to stop his Wednesday execution. Vicki Werneke says the defense had no warning that Slagle might commit suicide.

Mike Ratliff, chief investigator for the Ross County coroner, said the case was under investigation and no initial findings could be provided.