Child killer literally a marked man
David MacAnally/Eyewitness News
Crothersville - Convicted child killer Anthony Stockelman's face and head were unmarked at his trial last year. But now he's turned up at Wabash Correctional Facility with a tattoo on the forehead reading 'Katie's revenge.'
Katie is Katie Collman of Crothersville, the little girl he confessed to raping and killing last year. The Department of Corrections is not saying who applied the tattoo, which is against prison regulations, or why. They say they are still investigating.
Katie's dad, John Neace, has his own theory. Wednesday he said, "If I had to guess I'd say it's a statement from the inmates."
Katie's father says he heard about the tattoo from friends and has no idea if Katie's distant cousin, who is also serving time at Wabash, played any role.
Neace continued, "When I first saw it I wondered if someone was playing a hoax with these pictures. Then I looked a little bit further and found it was a news channel that was putting his picture out. And I knew it had to be real."
Terry Gray, a Collman family friend told Eyewitness News, "I figure that probably mister Stockelman was given the choice of a tattoo or facing the same thing that Katie did. In the early interviews they have with him when he was in prison, when he first got there, it was kind of like a vacation to him, wasn't too bad at all. So I'd say he probably has a change of heart about that now."
At Crothersville kids enjoy a park dedicated to Katie's memory. The people who devoted their time and talent to build the place were shocked at the little girl's killing, but not so shocked about what happened to her killer in prison.
One said, "I think the prisoners did it to him. I'm surprised he hasn't been killed yet."
Another commented, "I can't really see himself doing that. He's probably regarded very low with the other prisoners."
The Corrections Department is also trying to figure out how that photo of the tattoo got out from behind prison walls. They've moved Stockleman to an area of increased security.