A man accused of attempting to kill his sister – who recently woke up from a two-year coma to name him as her assailant – has died.
Daniel J Palmer III died Thursday in a hospital in Charleston, West Virginia, six days after being charged with the attempted murder and willful injury of his sister Wanda.
He was taken to hospital on Wednesday, the day before his death, following an evaluation by the prison medical staff.
The cause of his death was not released.
Wanda Palmer was beaten and given to death at her home near Cottageville, West Virginia in June 2020.
It is thought that she was attacked with a machete or hatchet.
According to local news at the time, she had been injured so badly that the police thought she was already dead.
But despite suffering from brain damage, he eventually managed to name his brother as his attacker.
Jackson County Sheriff Ross Mellinger told West Virginia Metro News, “The keys to the whole thing lie with the victim himself, and because he is unable to communicate, we are left with nothing.
“Now down, two years later and boom, she’s awake and able to tell us exactly what happened.”
Mellinger said Palmer “didn’t give us any fights or anything” when he was arrested, adding, “There was a bit of a surprise, but not quite.”
A court document seen by NBC News stated that Ms. Palmer had been able to remember living in her trailer near her mother’s home and “indicated that she remembered being injured there.”
“She mentioned her head (the area of her body where she was injured),” she said.
“When asked who had hurt her, she (said) her brother.
“He then identified his brother as Daniel.
“When asked why Daniel attacked her, Wanda stated that he was bad.”
Daniel Palmer, 55, appeared in court after his arrest, but had to be dragged out of the courtroom after becoming combative.
He denied having attacked his sister.
According to court documents, there was a witness who saw him in the doorway of his sister’s trailer at midnight the night she was attacked.
This had made him an interesting person, but it was only when Ms. Palmer awoke from a coma and named him as her assailant that the police had enough to make the arrest.