Inmate Sentenced to Death For Jailhouse Murder That Cost Maricopa County $500K; Thanks Again, Joe

Categories: News
death sentence.jpg
Pete Van Winkle (left) and his victim, Robert Cotton (right)
A Maricopa County Jail inmate convicted of the beating and strangling death of a fellow inmate has been sentenced to death.

This afternoon, 27-year-old Pete Van Winkle learned his fate in Maricopa County Superior Court after he was convicted of first-degree murder earlier this year.

Van Winkle was convicted of the infamous jailhouse murder of 28-year-old Robert Leroy Cotton, while the two were inmates at the Fourth Avenue Jail. The inmate's death ended up costing the county $500,000, but we'll get to that later.

Van Winkle, a known member of the Aryan Brotherhood prison gang, was awaiting trial for attempted second-degree murder, when the jailhouse murder occurred.

After completing a seven-year prison sentence for trafficking in stolen property, theft, and shoplifting, Van Winkle was free for about five months before police say he shot Huy Minh Nguyen in the head inside a Phoenix apartment.

Cotton was awaiting sentencing after being convicted of driving a stolen vehicle and drug possession, when he was murdered, while in the sheriff's custody.

Jail surveillance video showed Van Winkle strangling Cotton and stomping on his head for nearly 20 minutes, before trying to throw his lifeless body off the second floor of the cell house.

The attack went virtually unnoticed by the sheriff's jailhouse squad and ended up costing the county $500,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by Cotton's family.

Just another case of the Sheriff's Office putting those tax-dollars to (gulp) good use.


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7 comments
Robert Jennings
Robert Jennings

Who cares?  They're both scum that needed what they got.  500k for what one scumbag did to another scumbag.  You liberals are a freakin' joke. This country is going to the gangs because everyone uses the drugs you wont allow us to stop at the border, but somehow it's all Joe's fault.

Sonofakilise
Sonofakilise

thank you for you comment im the step son

whiteboy
whiteboy

this is my step dad and i hope this guy that killed him goes to hell no one desurves to die like that

Bpcotton
Bpcotton

Sonofakilise- who are you?

Bpcotton
Bpcotton

This is robbies brother...how are u his stepson....please get back to me...thanks

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