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Murder charged in 2nd Menard prison inmate death

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — A 23-year-old Menard Correctional Center inmate has been charged with murdering his cellmate.

Randolph County State's Attorney Jeremy Walker says Donald Hazzard allegedly beat 64-year-old Yusuf Abuzir (YOO'-suf ah-boo-ZEER') in their cell Jan. 25. Abuzir died in the prison infirmary Feb. 25.

Walker says Hazzard will be held in the Randolph County Jail on a $750,000 bond after he's released from Menard. Hazzard's 4 ½-year sentence for illegal weapons possession in McLean County is scheduled to end Sunday.

Abuzir's death is one of three cases of inmates dying under suspicious circumstances at Menard since Jan. 31. Walker filed murder charges against James Amison in the Jan. 31 beating of Jason Hall.

Thirty-five-year-old William Crowder was found dead in his cell March 26. Authorities are awaiting autopsy results.

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Online: http://www2.illnois.gov/idoc/

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