- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 15, 2016

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (AP) - Authorities say a man charged in a recent Portsmouth slaying had been released from prison two years ago after serving nearly 20 years for beating a woman with an ax.

News outlets report 58-year-old Michael Coker was arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the death of Idoius Copeland on Sunday.

Detectives say Coker admitted to beating Copeland in the head with a brick at the Westhaven Manor assisted-living facility, where the two men lived.

Copeland died at the scene.

The Virginian-Pilot reports (https://bit.ly/1XoKa12) Coker was convicted of beating Tammie Wainwright in the head repeatedly with an ax in 1995, exposing part of her brain. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison and was released in 2014. Wainwright died in 2013.

It isn’t clear whether Coker has an attorney.

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