Murder suspect in critical condition from overdose, police say

Published 11:55 pm Saturday, November 25, 2006

A man wanted in the beating death of a 61-year-old woman was hospitalized Friday from an apparent drug overdose, police said.

Mark Alan Henegan, 45, was found early Thursday unconscious between two trailers in Gulfport, Police Chief Alan Weatherford said.

Weatherford had earlier identified Henegan as the suspect in the death of Delphia Fitts, who was found Wednesday beaten to death in her home. Authorities had obtained an arrest warrant on a capital murder charge, and had been on the lookout for Henegan.

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Police said Henegan had been begging for money in Fitt’s neighborhood around the time of the slaying.

Henegan was found Thursday about 2:30 a.m., when medical personnel and police responded to an emergency call. Weatherford said an officer on the scene recognized the unconscious man to be Henegan.

Henegan was in critical condition, but Weatherford declined say where he was being treated. He said Henegan will remain there under police custody until he recovers.

Weatherford said there are no other suspects in the slaying, but the investigation is ongoing.

Henegan is originally from Broadmoor, the same neighborhood where the murder took place, and he had returned there after some time away, Weatherford said.

Fitts, who was well known to her neighbors and friends as a woman active in the community and church, likely knew her attacker, police said.

Police said it is important that people notify authorities when someone is soliciting for money.

“If someone comes to your door, begging for money, we need to know about that,” Weatherford said.