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Death of Kern County inmate under investigation as a possible homicide

March 24, 2010 |  6:23 pm

Authorities are investigating the death of a Kern Valley State Prison inmate as a possible homicide.

Angel Ramirez, 30, an inmate from Los Angeles County who was serving a seven-year, four-month sentence for drug possession for sales, was pronounced dead Tuesday morning while being transported to a local hospital. He had been serving time at the prison since September 2007.

Officials with the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said the death is being investigated by the Kern County district attorney’s office. The incident was also reported to the Office of the Inspector General’s Bureau of Independent Review.

State corrections officials did not specify the injuries suffered by Ramirez. They said the suspect in this case is a 30-year-old inmate serving a 50-years-to-life sentence from Los Angeles County for first-degree murder.

Kern Valley State Prison, opened in 2005, houses nearly 4,800 inmates who range from from minimum- to high-security inmates. 

--Andrew Blankstein