An inmate at the State Correctional Institution -Laurel Highlands has been charged with killing another inmate in a fight.
State police arrested Mark Edward Farabaugh, 43, for criminal homicide, aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person, simple assault and disorderly conduct. He was arraigned before District Judge Ken Johnson of Somerset. No bond is set for criminal homicide.
A fight occurred at 7:30 a.m. March 24 in the E Unit of the prison between Farabaugh and Keith Williams, according to an affidavit. An inmate told state police that the two men argued over food and it escalated when Williams stood out of his wheelchair and Farabaugh punched him in the knee, knocking him to the ground.
One inmate told state police that Farabaugh struck Williams at least four times and another inmate said six times. A third inmate said he saw Farabaugh throw 12 punches. All three men told state police that Williams didn't strike Farabaugh.
A fourth inmate said he saw Williams on the floor and an inmate he knew only as "Big Mark" striking him with a closed fist. Farabaugh stands 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs 364 pounds, according to police.
A corrections officer responded and ended the fight.
Farabaugh told state police that Williams had blocked him from leaving a section of the unit and slapped him, knocking his glasses off his face. Farabaugh said that he restrained himself because of Williams' age and that he slapped Williams but didn't strike him with a closed fist. He said Williams tackled him and began punching him. He suggested that "Maybe when he went to the operation room somebody went in there and hit him with a baseball bat."
Williams, who was 52, was first taken to Somerset Hospital because he was complaining of pain in his wrist and knee. During his treatment, Williams began complaining about pain on the left side of his head. He was transferred to Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center in Johnstown for further treatment. He died two days later.
During an autopsy, a skull fracture was found on the left side of Williams' head that pathologist Dr. Manjunath Heggere described as "significant." The cause of death was inflicted blunt force trauma to the head. Heggere told state police that the fracture was consistent with repetitive blows and couldn't have been caused by a fall.
Farabaugh is still at SCI-Laurel Highlands. He was sentenced in 2009 in Allegheny County on charges of fleeing or attempting to elude police, resisting arrest and driving under the influence. Williams was arrested in Allegheny County for rape.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday.