Suspect in Doctor’s Death Found Dead

OLATHE, Kan. (AP) Johnson County authorities say a man charged in the death of a South Carolina pediatrician died in his jail cell.

Master Deputy Tom Erickson says John Meredith Hodges, 45, was found unresponsive in the cell on Monday. Efforts to resuscitate him failed. Erickson says the death is being investigated as a suicide but released no other details.

Hodges was charged with first-degree murder in the death of Franchesca D. Brown, 39, of Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Brown’s body was found last September near an Overland Park hotel. She was in the city to attend a medical conference.

Police say Hodges and Brown had an off-and-on relationship. The Kansas City Star reports Hodges told detectives that he strangled Brown during an argument inside her hotel room.