David Neal Cox, a Mississippi man executed for killing his estranged wife and other crimes, and last month became the first execution performed in the state in nine years, admitted to a second 2007 murder that could lead police to the body of a missing woman, according to The Associated Press.
Cox, 50 at the time of his death, was executed Nov. 17 after he surrendered his ongoing appeals to his 2012 conviction for the May 2010 murder of his wife, Kim Kirk Cox, calling himself “worthy of death” according to court documents.
Cox reportedly told his attorneys the details of the 2007 murder he committed, killing his sister-in-law Felicia Cox, a crime for which he had long been a suspect. He told them where they could find her body and agreed to waive attorney-client privilege after his death, leading to the police receiving the information from Cox’s lawyers two days after his execution.
“There is no indication that anyone other than Cox is responsible for Felicia Cox’s death,” said John Weddle, district attorney for multiple Mississippi counties, in a press conference Monday.
Before David Neal Cox’s execution, family members of Felicia Cox spoke about how they hoped he would confess to the crime since Felicia Cox’s daughter said she knew he was the last person to see her alive.
Cox was arrested for the sexual assault of his then 12-year-old stepdaughter in the summer of 2009 and released without standing trial in April 2010. Kim Kirk Cox got a restraining order against him and moved in with her sister.
May 14, 2010, Cox entered the house, shot his estranged wife twice and held her, his stepdaughter, and her stepdaughter’s brother hostage for over eight hours, sexually assaulting his stepdaughter while her mother died and police and family members tried to negotiate their release with Cox over the phone.
In a news release Monday, the state’s Office of Capital Post-Conviction Counsel said David Neal Cox “felt deep remorse and wanted to bring closure” to Felicia Cox’s family.
Weddle did not disclose the location Cox provided but said it is in Pontotoc County, Mississippi, where Felicia Cox was last seen. He said investigators are preparing to begin recovery efforts. Mississippi State University archaeology and anthropology experts are on hand to assist if the remains are located, Weddle said.
“We would like to stress that locating the remains of Felicia Cox is not a foregone conclusion,” the district attorney added. “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.”
Felicia Cox’s daughter, Amber Miskelly, was present at the news conference, standing next to her husband. She was silent as Weddle spoke, but wiped away tears. Miskelly had just turned 18 when her mother went missing.
Cox pleaded guilty in 2012 to capital murder for the May 2010 shooting death of Kim Kirk Cox. He also pleaded guilty to multiple other charges, including sexual assault. A jury handed down the death sentence.