Larry Mark
Photo: Florida Department of Corrections

In an apparent bid to top every absurd “Florida Man” story ever told, an inmate at a Florida correctional facility strangled his cellmate, gouged out his eyes, mutilated the body and made a necklace with the victim’s body parts before heading to eat breakfast in the chow hall.

According to the Miami Herald, the Columbia Correctional Institution in Lake City, Fla. houses some of the state’s most dangerous and violent convicted felons. The prison’s undermanned staff often deals with prisoner on prisoner violence.

On Thursday morning, an unnamed inmate took the opportunity to kill 58-year-old Larry Mark, who was serving time for a 1981 robbery-turned-murder that netted Mark and his accomplice $35, a wedding ring and a life sentence. Sources say that Mark’s roommate, who is yet to be named by prison officials, was angry at Mark for “pestering him.” What happened next, according to the Herald, may make you want to put down your lunch before reading:

After strangling him, he cut off [Mark’s] ear and gouged out his eyeballs, three sources confirmed. He put the ear on a string around his neck, showing it off to several inmates, before morning breakfast in the chow hall, the sources said. He left the eyeballs in a cup in the cell and told other prisoners that he intended to either eat or drink them later.

And yes, The Root is quite aware that the only reason you’re reading this is to see if we mention whether the person who allegedly tried to introduce a new soup called Oodles of Eyeballs was black or white.

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Well, no one will say.

Florida Department of Corrections officials declined to be interviewed, but issued a statement saying, “Any loss of life at the hands of an inmate is intolerable.” The statement, from FDC secretary Julie Jones, added: “We are working with our partners at FDLE [Florida Department of Law Enforcement] to investigate this death and ensure anyone responsible is held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”

Corrections officers noted that the incident occurred a few hours prior to another Thursday melee that erupted at the prison when two armed gangs, the Bloods and the Cutthroats, began cutting throats and spilling blood in a stabbing spree over contraband.

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Although authorities haven’t explained how officers missed the fact that there was one less prisoner at morning count, records show inmate killings, violence and contraband are at an all-time high inside Florida prisons while the understaffed facilities’ corrections officers are increasingly young and inexperienced, making them easy prey for prison gangs, according to officers who spoke to the Miami Herald.

While this might seem like the ultimate tale of the “Florida Man” phenomenon, the preposterous tales of people who casually make phone calls while hanging on the hoods of speeding cars and shoot people over parking spaces, never underestimate Florida Man.

The Root could not confirm that the inmate has been moved to another facility housing Florida’s most dangerous criminals ...

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Mar-a-Lago.