California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokeswoman, Terry Thornton, broke the news to USA Today Sports that former NFL star, Lawrence Phillips, has passed away. His body was found in his cell and while little details have been released, the death is being investigated as a suicide. Phillips was serving a seven-year term at Kern Valley State Prison in Delano, CA. He was there for a felony assault with a deadly weapon, as well as a domestic abuse incident with his ex-girlfriend, but this was just the beginning of his troubles.
Phillips’ mother received a letter from the late football player in March that did forewarn something bad happening. “I feel myself very close to snapping,” he wrote in a letter dated March 5, 2015. “My anger grows daily as I have become fed up with prison. I feel my anger is near bursting and that will result in my death or the death of someone else.” Just over a month later, his cellmate, Damion Soward was found dead.
“Phillips’ former cellmate, Damion Soward, was found unresponsive April 11th in the cell the men shared and died as a result of strangulation, according to a coroner’s report. What was believed to be blood was found on Soward, Phillips’ white T-shirt and on several items, including the two T-shirts, pill bottles, a folder and a bag, according to the incident report.”
Investigators regarded Phillips as the prime suspect and charged him with first-degree murder in September. In November, prosecutors were granted a motion to consider the death penalty for Phillips and was awaiting trial until he was found early this morning. On Monday, the judge had allegedly ruled that there was enough evidence to convict Phillips for the murder of his cellmate.
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Source Cited: http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2016/01/13/lawrence-phillips-death-prison/78742058/