Inmate convicted of Region 8 murder commits suicide in cell

VARNER, Ark. (AP) - An inmate whom Arkansas corrections officials say committed suicide over the weekend has been identified.

29-year-old Jerry R. Smart was discovered Sunday in an isolation cell of the Varner Maximum Security Unit. Smart was serving life without the possibility of parole for a capital murder conviction out of Mississippi County.

Prison spokeswoman Dina Tyler said guards found the inmate at 3:18 p.m. during a routine check of his cell. Tyler says Smart had braided a bed sheet, looped it through bars on the door and around his neck.

An ambulance took Smart to the prison infirmary, where a physician pronounced him dead.

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