5:39 PM

The Springfield man who pleaded guilty two days ago to two counts of first-degree murder for the stabbing deaths of an elderly Carthage couple was found dead in his jail cell about 12:47 p.m. today.

Sheriff Archie Dunn says Matthew Laurin, 20, met with a counselor today and was asked if he was suicidal or planning to harm himself. Laurin told her, "No, I'm just angry," according to Dunn.

Before Laurin returned to his jail cell at 10:48 a.m. he dropped a letter/s in the mail. When jailers went to his cell to give him lunch they found him hanging from a bed sheet wrapped around an air conditioning grate. Dunn says he's not sure if the mail had been picked up or if investigators have the correspondence.

Dunn will hold a news conference at 6:00 p.m. to discuss Laurin's death. An autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow in Springfield.

Laurin, who was sentenced to two life sentences without the possibility of parole for the October 2008 murders of Robert and Ellen Sheldon, was due to be transferred to the Department of Corrections within a week.

Sheriff Dunn said he wasn't sure if Darren Winans, the alleged ringleader in the plan to kill the Sheldon's, knew of Laurin's death. "He's in prison for a probation violation right now, but you know how word travels. It wouldn't surprise me."
Laurin's death leaves no witness, or victims, for the states case against Winans.
Darren Winans (mug shot JCSO)

Winans capital murder trial was scheduled to begin in February of 2011, however, it has been canceled. A motion hearing is now set for August 23rd. It was at a motion hearing that Laurin pleaded guilty.

Several messages left for Jasper County Prosecutor Dean Dankelson have not been returned.


Anonymous said...

good riddance to matthew laurin! i have known and went to school with that monster my entire life and he was always creepy and sinister. i would go into details but i would rather not.
when i heard about the crime and this other man committed i can honestly say i was not surprised.

Anonymous said...

To the person above
I also knew Matt. We were neighbors growing up and I would have to disagree with you. Not only did he have a good heart but his entire family are wonderful people. I had lost touch from them after I moved and recently heard of this tragic story. My heart goes out to all the family's that were affected by this terrible crime. I didn't know Matt in his later years but I will remember him as the kid that I played house with in my playhouse and hide and go seek with. I feel so sad that he had gone down this terrible path and made such sad decisions. This whole story has me chilled to the bone. Again don't mistake me.. I know that because of his action and the crime that was committed great people lost their lives and I'm sure they are missed greatly but do not think that Matt was always this way. He was a great person once and he to, will be missed.

Anonymous said...

Actually he won't be missed by most of us. I went to school with him from first grade and he was always a jerk.