Inmate Gets 8 Years, Plus 10 Suspended, For Prison Killing

ROCKLAND, Maine (AP) — An inmate at a prison farm was sentenced to 8 years in prison, plus an additional 10 years suspended sentence, for killing his cellmate in an argument over cigarettes.

A judge in Knox County Superior Court sentenced Zachary Titus, 36, on Friday in the killing of Dana Bartlett, 28, in 2018 at the Bolduc Correctional Facility in Warren, the Courier-Gazette reported.

Another man who shared a cell with the two men told investigators that Titus put Bartlett in a chokehold while the two fought over cigarettes. An autopsy revealed Bartlett died from strangulation.

Titus pleaded guilty to manslaughter in December as part of an agreement that reduced the charge from murder.

At the time, Titus was serving a two-year sentence for theft, but remained in custody after waiving his right to a bail hearing in the Bartlett case.

Assistant Attorney General Leane Zainea had asked that Titus spend 12 years in prison for manslaughter, saying that he initially denied killing Bartlett, had not expressed remorse and had participated in other violent crimes previously.

At the the hearing Titus said, “I’m sorry for the death of Dana. I wish I could have met him outside the Department of Corrections.”