Death row inmate convicted of murdering infant son dies after being found unresponsive in cell

John Michael Ward was sentenced to death for killing his 4-month-old son in Magnolia Springs
Published: Aug. 31, 2023 at 7:17 PM CDT
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ATMORE, Ala. (WALA) - An autopsy is pending after a man on death row for the murder of his 4-month-old son was found unresponsive in his cell at Holman Correctional Facility near Atmore and later died at an area hospital, authorities said.

According to the Alabama Department of Corrections, correctional staff found 58-year-old John Michael Ward unresponsive in his cell on Tuesday evening. Ward was taken to the prison health care unit and then to a nearby hospital, where he died Wednesday, ADOC said.

In 1998, a jury found Ward guilty of capital murder for the 1997 killing of his 4-month-old son, Nicholas Allen Ward, in Magnolia Springs. By a vote of 10-2, the jury recommended that Ward be sentenced to death.

The ADOC Law Enforcement Services Division is investigating Ward’s death. The cause of death is pending an autopsy and the conclusion of the investigation, officials said.