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Inmate dead by apparent suicide

Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 4:34 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D (KOTA) - An inmate at the South Dakota State Penitentiary has died by apparent suicide.

Michael Hand, age 25, was found unresponsive in his cell on April 2. He died in a Sioux Falls hospital on April 3.

Hand had been serving a 25-year sentence for a first-degree manslaughter conviction in Pennington County. His conviction stems from the 2014 Rapid City murder of Myron Rock.

Rock, 47, was found dead in an ally, having succumbed to injuries sustained during a violent beating at the hands of then 18 year old Hand.

Hand was facing the possibility of life behind bars when he pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a deal with prosecutors that put a 25 year cap on his potential prison time.

In his confession statement, Hand said that he struck Rock multiple times in a fit of drunken anger, but that he hadn’t meant to kill him.

The Sioux Falls Division of Criminal Investigation is currently reviewing Michael Hand’s death.

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