General Crime

* Contra Costa Inmate Found Dead In State Prison In Folsom

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A convicted sex offender from Contra Costa County was found dead in his state prison cell in Folsom and a convicted murderer from Alameda County who was his cellmate is suspected of killing him, according to prison officials. Correctional officers found the 51-year-old inmate from Contra Costa County unresponsive in his cell at California State Prison, Sacramento, just after 9 p.m. Wednesday when prisoners were being counted. The inmate, whose name is being withheld pending notification of his next of kin, was pronounced dead about 20 minutes later. The prison’s investigative services unit is investigating the death as a homicide.

Prison officials said the man had been in prison since Dec. 10, 2001, and was serving a 25-year-to-life sentence from Contra Costa County for assault with the intent to commit a specific sex act. They said the 46-year-old suspect has been in state prison since Nov. 9, 1986, and is serving a 17-year-to-life sentence from Alameda County for second-degree murder. The suspect is being housed in the prison’s administrative segregation unit pending the completion of the investigation. Prison officials said California State Prison, Sacramento, houses about 2,600 inmates and employs more than 1,700 staff members. They said it primarily houses maximum-security inmates serving long sentences and those who have proved to be management problems at other institutions.

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