State police from the Mt. Pleasant post are investigating the death of a Clare County Jail inmate.
John Engel, 54, of Harrison was found dead in his cell by deputies and corrections staff at roughly 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Clare County Undersheriff Dwayne Miedzianowski said.
It appears Engel committed suicide, the undersheriff said.
Deputies contacted state police and turned the investigation over, Miedzianowski said.
Engel was in jail awaiting transfer to the Charles Egeler Reception and Guidance Center at the state prison in Jackson, where male prisoners are taken before being placed.
Clare County Circuit Judge Roy Mienk last week ordered Engel to spend 25 to 50 years in prison for raping a girl younger than 13.
Prosecutor Michelle Ambrozaitis charged Engel in January 2016 with five counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct.
A jury on Nov. 29 found Engel guilty of one count.
Engel was accused of raping a child five times between January 2010 and December 2011.
Troopers from the Mt. Pleasant post conducted a “lengthy investigation” before Ambrozaitis authorized the charges last January, according to previous reports. ..Source.. by Susan Field