Police Find Remains After a Death-Row Confession

David Neal Cox admitted killing sister-in-law before he was executed in Mississippi
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 7, 2021 8:45 AM CST
Updated Dec 13, 2021 11:41 AM CST
Before Execution for Wife's Killing, He Confessed to Another
Amber Miskelly, daughter of Felicia Cox, who has been missing since July 2007, wipes tears from her face as District Attorney John Weddle, right, holds a press conference Monday, in the Pontotoc County Courthouse, in Pontotoc, Miss.   (Adam Robison/The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal via AP)

(Newser) Update: Authorities in Mississippi have found the body of a woman after a death-row inmate confessed just before his execution. David Neal Cox, convicted of murdering his wife, told authorities before he died that he also killed sister-in-law Felicia Cox and told them where to find her body. On Sunday, police found remains in Pontotoc County and are awaiting final confirmation. Our original story from Dec. 7 follows:

The Mississippi inmate executed last month for the 2010 murder of his estranged wife confessed to killing his sister-in-law, too. Weeks before David Neal Cox received a lethal injection on Nov. 17, the 50-year-old told his attorneys that he killed his brother's wife, Felicia Cox, who was last seen in 2007, and pointed to where investigators could find her remains, First Circuit District Attorney John Weddle said at a Monday press conference. Prosecutors had been pushing for such a confession as the convicted killer was long suspected in Felicia Cox's 2007 disappearance, per the AP. Indeed, "there is no indication that anyone other than Cox is responsible for Felicia Cox's death," Weddle said.

Cox said Felicia Cox's remains would be found in a location in Mississippi's Pontotoc County, according to Weddle. The 40-year-old had last been seen in July 2007 while visiting David Neal Cox's wife, Kim Kirk Cox, in Pontotoc. Kim Kirk Cox would be killed by her husband less than three years later. Weddle didn't provide details on the 2007 death but said David Neal Cox confessed to his lawyers with the Office of Capital Post-Conviction Counsel in late October and waived his attorney-client privilege after death. The office said Monday that David Neal Cox "felt deep remorse and wanted to bring closure" to Felicia Cox's family.

A letter outlining the confession was submitted to the district attorney's office in Tupelo on Nov. 19, per the Washington Post. Recovery efforts will begin "in the coming days," Weddle said. "We are hopeful that the information is accurate and that recovery efforts will be successful so that Felicia's family may give her a proper burial," he added, noting Mississippi State University archaeology and anthropology experts would be on hand. Felicia Cox's daughter, Amber Miskelly, who was just 18 when her mother disappeared, wiped away tears as Weddle spoke at the press conference, per the AP. "At this point, I'm just wanting to find my mother," she later said, per WLBT. (Read more murder stories.)

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