Slaying suspect found dead in cell
by Martha Sparks
BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (AP) — A former Man area resident accused of killing a Bluefield man and wounding the victim’s wife apparently committed suicide in his cell, police said.
State police Cpl. A.P. Christian told media outlets that Donald “Snake” Adams, 54, of Bluefield hanged himself with his shoestrings.
Christian said a Bluefield police officer found Adams unresponsive in an isolated cell at the city jail Wed., Oct. 3. He said Adams had been cooperative and gave no indication that he was a suicide risk.
“I haven’t heard from anyone that he might have been considering this,” Christian said.
Adams’ body was taken to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in South Charleston.
Adams had been awaiting transfer to the Southern Regional Jail following his arrest Tues., Oct. 2, after being charged with fatally shooting John Watkins, 79, and wounding the victim’s wife, Monika Watkins, during a robbery.
Police Lt. D.W. Dillow of the Bluefield police aid Monika Watkins “is no longer on life support. Hopefully, she’ll make it.”
Bluefield Detective B.L. Hamm said Adams confessed to the shootings in a taped interview after his arrest. Adams also told a Mercer County magistrate at his initial court appearance that he intended to plead guilty. As he was led away, he told reporters he had been high on cocaine and planned to rob the couple, who had loaned him money in the past.
“I’d say if West Virginia had a death penalty, I would probably deserve it,” Adams said.
He also told the media that he hoped the victims’ families could forgive him.
Adams was a graduate of Man High School where he was a star athlete lettering in football, basketball and baseball. His services are set for 1 p.m. tomorrow at the St. James Missionary Baptist Church at Kistler.
An article by The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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