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Idaho Death Row inmate, 41, dies after long illness

An inmate on Idaho’s Death Row died today after an extended illness, the state Department of Correction announced; Michael Allen Jauhola had been on Death Row at the Idaho Maximum Security Institution (The Max) since 2001, and had been transferred to the prison’s medical unit in May. Jauhola, 41, received his death sentence for beating another inmate to death with a baseball bat in a racially motivated attack in the exercise yard of the Max; at the time, Jauhola was serving time for voluntary manslaughter and escape. Click below for a full report from the Associated Press.

Corrections official Teresa Jones said an autopsy will be performed to verify the cause of death, following “standard procedure.”


Idaho death row inmate dies after extended illness

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A prisoner who has been on Idaho's death row since 2001 died Wednesday after an extended illness, the state Department of Correction said.

Michael Allen Jauhola had been on death row at the Idaho Maximum Security Institution since 2001, when he was sentenced for the 1998 murder of a fellow inmate. He was moved to the prison's medical unit in May.

Idaho Department of Correction spokeswoman Theresa Jones said Jauhola's death was expected because of his illness, and the 41-year-old was under the care of a doctor when he died. She said she could not release the nature of his illness because of federal health care privacy rules.

Jones said the Ada County coroner will perform an autopsy to verify the cause of death.

Jauhola was sent to death row in 2001 for beating to death a fellow inmate while he was serving time for voluntary manslaughter and escape.

Jauhola was born in Anchorage, Alaska, but was living in Canyon County in 1993 when he was convicted of voluntary manslaughter after prosecutors said he stabbed a rival gang member to death, 17-year-old Geraldo Malacara. While awaiting sentencing on that conviction, he escaped from the Canyon County Jail and was sentenced in 1994 to 17 years for both offenses.

Five years later, Jauhola was convicted of beating a fellow inmate to death with a baseball bat in the exercise yard at the maximum security prison. The victim, John Alfred Williams, 38, was hit several times in the head and continued to be beaten after he collapsed. Williams, who was black, died the next day in a Boise hospital.

In condemning Jauhola to death on May 9, 2001, 4th District Judge Deborah Bail said he “killed coldly, remorselessly, deliberately and for no reason other than the victim's race or the fact that he may have annoyed him in the distant past. … The defendant has forfeited his right to life and merits the most severe penalty available.”

Jauhola had an appeal pending before Bail, but nothing had been filed in the case since December.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press

 


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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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