Federal inmate indicted in 2017 death of fellow inmate at USP Hazelton


CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – A federal inmate is facing voluntary manslaughter and assault charges in the death of another inmate, at USP Hazelton in Bruceton Mills, Acting United States Attorney Randolph Bernard announced.

Joenell Rice, 34, was indicted on one count of “Voluntary Manslaughter” and one count of “Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury.” Rice is accused of assaulting another inmate, identified simply as “D.G.,” by striking him in the head multiple times, killing him. The crime occurred at USP Hazelton in October 2017.

Rice faces up to 15 additional years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for the manslaughter charge and faces up to 10 more years of incarceration and fine of up to $250,000 for the assault charge, Bernard’s office said.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons, Special Investigative Services investigated the case.

Rice is currently serving his original sentence at USP Allenwood, a high security penitentiary in central Pennsylvania. His current release date is listed as April 2028.

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