Authorities Say Murder Suspect Had Gun In Body Cavity

By: April Davis / Carly Swain
By: April Davis / Carly Swain

JACKSONVILLE, NC - A man wanted for murder in the Atlanta area was found with a gun in his jail cell, and lawmen believe he had that weapon hidden in his rectum when he was booked into jail.

Michael Ward remains in the Onslow County jail after his arrest Monday morning.

Deputies say the gun measures 10 inches, including a 4-1/2 inch barrel.

Deputies tell WITN News that Ward was searched and strip searched before he was placed into a holding cell. Jailers also made Ward perform what they call a "squat and cough" procedure.

Ward will undergo a search again today, as well as a medical evaluation at Onslow Memorial Hospital to make sure that no injury occurred.

Deputies say the gun was not loaded, but later test fired and it was found to be fully operational.

State Trooper Scott Merritt says at 9:30 a.m. Monday morning a car driven by Ward passed him on Highway 17 going more than 90 miles per hour. Merritt teamed up with a Duplin County trooper down the road, and pulled the car over north of Dixon.

The Highway Patrol says Ward rolled up his window and locked the doors when troopers approached the car. They say Ward was in the car with a woman claiming to be his wife, the two both refused to roll down the windows.

After some coercion, the troopers were able to get the door open and had to taze the driver to get him to comply. Ward was then taken to the hospital because he was complaining of heart problems and claimed he was unable to get out of the car because he was disabled, and could not walk. Troopers searched the man at the hospital.

Ward, who gave several false names, was then taken to the Onslow County jail. At this point lawmen say he was thoroughly searched again and put in a cell.

Eventually, jailers discovered the .38 caliber handgun in his cell.

Upon further investigation, investigators found he is wanted for first degree murder and armed robbery in Canton, Georgia. Ward was being held in Onslow County awaiting extradition back to Georgia.

His "wife" also gave a false name.

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  • by deer hunter Location: ENC on Feb 1, 2012 at 04:12 AM
    Maybe he swallowed it? Is that an antler in the middle of his forehead?
  • by Satchmo Location: Jacksonville on Jan 20, 2012 at 07:05 AM
    Ouch! This clown deserves the pain and the embarrasment for doing this stunt. The weapon would not have fired, it was clogged with the remnants of fried chicken and mac and cheese.
  • by Or..... Location: ENC on Jan 17, 2012 at 03:32 AM
    Or...... this could be a case of a serious screw up by those who were supposed to search...... but didn't. Think about it..... first the barrel goes up...... okay.... simple enough right? Then its time for the butt.....err... the handle. Well a gun doesn't bend it really possible to have that in there during the 'bend over and cough' session? Either that or the barrel was about to poke out his lower abdomen. Really?
  • by Susie Location: Greenville on Jan 17, 2012 at 03:27 AM
    This goes to show how dangerous it is for our law officers. It is no doubt this man would have shot the officer that pulled him and it sounds like he could have stuffed him and nobody would have known. How would you like being in the company of such kind? Gross!
  • by Craig Location: G-Vegas on Jan 16, 2012 at 12:47 PM
    Wow there are a lot of people that don't think this can happen. I have no doubt it can happen and I will tell you why. Sometimes when I wake up to go to work in the morning, I will walk into the bathroom and find that my 11 year old son has pooped in the night and not flushed. I don't know if I need to take an ax to that log or use the plunger to help steer it down the toilet. Geez!!! I still think he has the bullets to the gun hidden somewhere else; nose, ears, urethra, etc.
  • by bb on Jan 16, 2012 at 09:11 AM
    some of these comments are so funny!! thanks for the laugh guys.
  • by blah Location: gville on Jan 16, 2012 at 12:09 AM
    do you think you can hand me that...b/c i have gun in my rectum
  • by Formerly Pirateman on Jan 15, 2012 at 09:28 AM
    Hello-O-O-O-O-O-o-o-o-o-o. Is anybody in there-ere-ere-ere-ere-ere?
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jan 15, 2012 at 06:19 PM in reply to Formerly Pirateman
      Not funny.
      • reply
        by Random on Jan 16, 2012 at 07:06 AM in reply to
        Yes funny!
    • reply
      by BLAHammed on Jan 16, 2012 at 01:18 PM in reply to Formerly Pirateman
      Pretty darn sure somebody has been.
  • by teremist Location: Florida on Jan 15, 2012 at 08:02 AM
    Also recovered, was a 60" flat screen HDTV, and a foot long Subway ham and cheese.
    • reply
      by Random on Jan 16, 2012 at 07:08 AM in reply to teremist
      More funny. I hope the sandwich did not have those little green peppers!
  • by wild kingdom Location: ENC on Jan 15, 2012 at 12:45 AM
    He probably could have hid it in his nose.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jan 15, 2012 at 06:19 PM in reply to wild kingdom
      not funny
      • reply
        by BLAHammed on Jan 16, 2012 at 03:15 PM in reply to
        That is funny!Wonder if his ex cell mate has ever thought of that?

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