CLEARFIELD – A S.C.I. Houtzdale inmate
has been charged with the murder of a fellow inmate. District Attorney William Shaw
Jr. identified the defendant as Lawrence Edward Peterson, Jr., age 44, from Easton,
An Affidavit of Probable Cause filed
by Trooper Patrick states that on August 2, 2013, S.C.I.Houtzdale employees responded
to cell #42 on the B Side of the F Unit in the State Correctional Institution
at Houtzdale, as a result of inmates yelling that another inmate was killing
Upon arrival at cell #42, the
employees observed inmate William Keitel, age 59, of Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, lying on the cell floor
bleeding profusely from the head and face. Staff said that the cell was in
disarray, with blood on the floor and sink. It was determined that Peterson had
assaulted inmate Keitel by striking him in the head and face several times with
his fists then kicking Keitel in the head, face, shoulder area, and other areas
of his body numerous times.
Inmate Keitel was transported to the
Altoona General Hospital for treatment where he was placed in the ICU/Trauma
Unit. Keitel was treated for traumatic head injuries, skull and rib fractures,
lacerations, contusions, and abrasions. Neurologic exams revealed traumatic
brain injury and unresponsiveness. Keitel was declared brain dead on August 11,
On June 10, 2014, Trooper David
Patrick of the Pennsylvania State Police, Clearfield Barracks, filed a Criminal
Complaint charging Peterson with: 1) Criminal Homicide; 2) Murder of the First Degree;
3) Murder of the Third Degree, F1; 4)
Aggravated Assault, F1; 5) Involuntary Manslaughter, M1; and 6) Recklessly
Endangering Another Person, M2.
On June 17, 2014, Peterson was
arraigned by Magisterial District Judge James Hawkins, and a preliminary
hearing is scheduled for July 21, 2014. Shaw stated that Peterson is currently
serving a sentence of 40 years to 80 years for Robbery with serious bodily
injury. Shaw thanked the Pennsylvania State Police and the staff of S.C.I.
Houtzdale for their hard work and
assistance with this case.