D.C. Sniper to Be Fed Forcibly

A judge allowed corrections officials to forcibly feed convicted sniper John Allen Muhammad (search) while he awaits trial in the county for six October 2002 killings.

Muhammad had not eaten anything since being transferred to the Montgomery County (search), Md., jail on Monday, corrections officials said in court documents filed Thursday. He was apparently upset with the food he was being served and the handling of his legal material.

Doctors had concluded that Muhammad, 44, was at risk of serious injury or death of he continued his hunger strike, corrections officials said. Judge James L. Ryan issued an order allowing officials at the county jail to forcibly feed and hydrate him.

Muhammad and Lee Malvo, 20, are accused of killing 10 people and wounding three in Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C., during an October 2002 shooting rampage.

Muhammad has already been sentenced to die following a 2003 conviction for a sniper shooting in Manassas, Va. Malvo was sentenced to life in prison for a shooting in Falls Church, Va.

Montgomery County prosecutors plan to try the two men together for the shootings in their county, as insurance in case their Virginia convictions are overturned. They will be returned to Virginia when their trial is over.

The two have also been linked to shootings in Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia and Washington state.