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Prison officials believe prisoner killed by cell mate

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JACKSON, Miss. (KNOE 8 News/AP) - The Lauderdale County sheriff's office is investigating the June 10 strangulation of an inmate at East Mississippi Correctional Facility.

Management and Training Corp., the Utah-based private company which runs the prison for the state, said Tuesday officers found Elliot McGrew alone and unresponsive in his cell on June 10, with a rope made of sheets tied around his neck. He was pronounced dead at a Meridian hospital.

Lauderdale County Sheriff Billy Sollie says McGrew died from strangulation but wasn't hanged. He says officials believe McGrew was killed by his cellmate, whom he did not name. Sollie says a grand jury will likely be asked to indict the cellmate.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections was sued in 2013 over conditions at the prison, designated for mentally disabled inmates.

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