Inmate accused of strangling cellmate at Lawton prison

Matthew Dorrough, 29, was found dead by prison officials Tuesday at the Lawton Correctional Facility. His cellmate, Joseph Palone, 24, is a suspect in Dorrough's death and has been placed in solitary confinement.
BY ZEKE CAMPFIELD zcampfield@opubco.com Published: February 23, 2012
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— An inmate accused of strangling his cellmate at Lawton Correctional Facility may be charged as early as Thursday, officials said.

Matthew A. Dorrough, 29, was found dead in his cell about 7:45 p.m. Tuesday. What initially was reported as a fatal accident is now thought to be a homicide.

Witness statements and forensic evidence collected at the scene indicate Dorrough didn't die from injuries after falling from his cell bunk, but because he was strangled, said Lawton Police Capt. Craig Akard, who heads the city's detective division.

“He was noticeably strangled,” Akard said. “Due to the marks around the neck, due to the individuals we talked to, we know that that's what happened.”

Dorrough's cellmate, Joseph Palone, 24, is a suspect but charges have not been filed.

Akard said Palone has been placed in solitary confinement, and Akard expects paperwork to be filed Thursday in Comanche County District Court.

Police are not revealing a possible motive behind the alleged attack.

Dorrough was placed at the Lawton prison in April after being convicted in Cleveland County of possessing a controlled drug after a prior felony drug conviction, according to state Corrections Department records.

Palone is serving three concurrent 10-year sentences on convictions of attempted robbery with a firearm, use of a vehicle in the discharge of a firearm and possession of a firearm after prior felony conviction.


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