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An inmate at an Indiana prison gave a newspaper the finger. Part of it, anyway.

Authorities said Michael McCune, 60, cut off a portion of his left middle finger and mailed it, along with a two-page handwritten letter, to Scott Underwood, editor of the The Herald Bulletin in Anderson, WTHR reported.

McCune was protesting the conditions at the Madison County Jail, The Herald Bulletin reported. McCune has since been transferred to the state Pendleton Correctional Facility, the newspaper reported. McCune is awaiting trial on an attempted murder charge after he was accused of stabbing Lavern Pflugh, of Anderson, 13 times at a birthday party in Anderson on Jan. 12.

According to WTHR, McCune In his letter to Underwood, wrote, “Find enclosed my left middle fingertip that I removed for a reason: to bring to light the oppressive conditions that exist here at the Madison County Jail.”


McCune also alleged that inmates were forced to sleep on the floor and were served cold food.

“I am of sound mind,” McCune wrote. “I removed this finger-tip to bring about changes of the oppressive conditions that exist here.”

According to Madison County Sheriff Scott Mellinger, McCune said he used a razor blade to cut the tip of his finger on May 21, The Herald Bulletin reported. The letter to the newspaper was postmarked the same day.

Mellinger said shaving razors are handed out to inmates every two or three days and then collected.

“The inmates take the blades out,” Mellinger told The Herald Bulletin, adding that McCune may have used one to cut his finger off at the base of the fingernail.

Mellinger said McCune was on disciplinary lockdown in a cell for stealing from the jail’s medical staff, The Herald Bulletin reported.

McCune was convicted in 1985 for stabbing another inmate to death at the Indiana Reformatory, now known as the Pendleton Correctional Facility, the newspaper reported. He served 28 years of a 60-year sentence and was paroled in 2013, The Herald Bulletin reported.

McCune was serving a sentence for a 1980 robbery conviction in Madison County when the stabbing occurred, the newspaper reported.

Anderson attorney Dave Alger, who is representing McCune, did not return calls from The Herald Bulletin seeking comment.