FOLSOM – A California State Prison, Sacramento officials are investigating an in-custody death as a possible homicide, with the suspect being the victim’s cellmate.
The inmate, identified as 44-year-old Cleophus Bealey, was serving 43 years to life in prison for first-degree murder and attempted murder in Los Angeles County. Bealey was found unresponsive in his cell at around 1:00 p.m. on Friday, September 9, 2016, CDCR officials said. Prison staff initiated lifesaving measures and Bealey was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead just before 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday evening.
Bealey’s cellmate, 41-year-old Meeko Carraway was serving 50 years to life in prison for the first-degree murder of a 36-year-old San Bernardino resident, Brenda Richardson.
According to court documents, Carraway lived with his wife, son and mother in a Pinon Hills home at the time of the murder. In October 1999, he went to San Bernardino with his family to visit another family member during which time he left the home to purchase some methamphetamine.
While making the purchase he asked the seller to help him find someone who would have sex with him in exchange for meth, which is how he met Richardson. The two had sex at one home and Carraway convinced the woman to go to his Pinon Hills home with him.
The following day, his wife Jeanette, showed up to the suspiciously clean home. Later she pressed him for information, which after telling a different story, per court testimony, he eventually told her that he “snapped” and choked Richardson to death. He said that after choking her, he removed her clothing, placed her body in the tub full of water and stepped on her neck to make sure it was broken to ensure she was in fact dead.
He then told her that after doing so he used a kitchen knife and wire cutters to remove Richardson’s head. He placed her head in a plastic bag and threw it in the California aqueduct while her body was dumped in the desert. Meeko Carraway, in court testimony, said that his wife, Jeanette killed Richardson in a jealous rage after finding her in the shower of their home. He admitted to cutting off her head and disposing of her body.
Following the discovery of his unresponsive cellmate, Mr. Carraway was placed in a segregation unit pending Coroner and Sacramento County District Attorney investigations.
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