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Accused Craigslist Killer Commits Suicide

from – Accused “Craigslist Killer” Philip Markoff committed suicide at Nashua Street Jail in Boston, where he was being held awaiting trial in the slaying of Julissa Brisman, according to Steven Tompkins, spokesman for the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office.

Markoff, 24, was pronounced dead at 10:17 this morning. While authorities are still investigating, Markoff was alone in his cell and all evidence collected so far indicates that it was a suicide, said a statement released by Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis and Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley.

Authorities have said that Markoff shot Brisman, 25, a New York masseuse who traveled to Boston after placing an advertisement for her services on Craigslist, three times with a handgun on April 14, 2009 after they struggled in the doorway of her room on the 20th floor of the Marriott Copley in Boston. A bullet pierced her heart. Prosecutors said Markoff also battered her head.

“I’m shocked and saddened by the news,” said John Salsberg, Markoff’s attorney.

Markoff’s next court appearance was a hearing scheduled for mid-September, he said.

Salsberg declined to comment further.

Markoff had been placed on suicide watch shortly after his arrest nearly a week after the slaying.

In April 2009, Markoff was examined by medical staff at the jail and put in a special cell under camera surveillance after a correction officer saw marks on his neck that suggested he had tried to use shoelaces to hang himself, the Globe reported at the time.

In May, a prison official told the Globe that Markoff was no longer being segregated from other prisoners. He was acclimating well, playing chess with the other inmates, according to the official.

Police arrested Markoff, who was living in Quincy, on April 20, 2009 after stopping him on Interstate 95 in Walpole. Markoff told police he was headed to the Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut. His fiancee, Megan McAllister, also was in the car.

Markoff and McAllister were driven to Boston in separate cars. He was held, while McAllister was released. In his arraignment the next day, Markoff pleaded not guilty to homicide and armed robbery charges.

Markoff and McAllister had been planning to marry in August 2009, but she called off the wedding.

Markoff, a former Boston University medical student, was also charged with armed robbery and kidnapping in two similar incidents in which the victims were not injured. Prosecutors contend that Markoff, who may have been motivated by gambling debts, preyed on prostitutes and erotic masseuses he met at hotels after seeing the women’s ads on the Craigslist website.


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