Authorities investigate death of inmate at correctional facility

PENDLETON — A 44-year-old man, serving a life sentence at the Pendleton Correctional Facility for murder, was found dead in his cell on Wednesday.

An autopsy for Michael Andrew Gibson is scheduled for Friday, said Madison County Coroner Danielle Noone.

Noone said Gibson’s death appears to be from natural causes, but that cannot be confirmed until the autopsy and toxicology are complete. She said the inmate was not sharing a cell with anyone at the time of his death.

Gibson was sentenced to life in 2010 after being convicted of murdering his cellmate at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility in Sullivan County, according to court records.

Robert Crane, 27, was strangled and drowned in his cell toilet by Gibson on March 21, 2008. Gibson admitted to killing Crane after deciding to kill someone six weeks prior to Crane’s death, according to police records.

Gibson, who was serving a 119-year sentence for two attempted murders, battery, burglary and possessing a weapon, made the decision to kill Crane after deciding he no longer wanted to be at the maximum-security prison in Carlisle. He said he wanted to do something extreme to get people to listen to him.

In 2005, Gibson was incarcerated at the Pendleton Correctional Facility when he and two other inmates attacked a fellow inmate who had sent a letter to officials indicating he had information regarding the stabbing of a prison guard, according to court records.

The inmate survived the stabbing, but suffered multiple stab sounds to the chest, right hand and left leg. Two of the wounds to the man’s lower chest could have been fatal, according to court records.

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