Thursday, October 1, 2015

Salinas Valley State Prison Investigating the Death of an Inmate as a Homicide

SOLEDAD — Salinas Valley State Prison (SVSP) officials are investigating the death of inmate Pedro M. Aguilar as a homicide.

On Sept. 28, 2015, custody staff conducting security checks found inmate Aguilar unresponsive in his cell. He was pronounced dead at 9:05 a.m.

Aguilar, 45, was serving life with the possibility of parole for lewd and lascivious acts on a child under 14 years old. He was admitted from Ventura County on Oct. 1, 2013.

Inmate Jerald A. Nelson, 59, Aguilar’s cellmate, has been identified as the suspect. Nelson is serving life with the possibility of parole for a first-degree murder conviction from Imperial County. Nelson has been in state prison since Sept. 22, 1983.

The Monterey County Coroner and the Monterey County District Attorney are also investigating. The Office of the Inspector General was notified.

SVSP, located in Monterey County, provides long-term housing for minimum- and maximum-security inmates. It provides educational, religious, work programs and self-help programs to inmates and provides treatment to mentally ill inmates. The prison was activated in 1996, houses approximately 3,700 inmates and employs approximately 1,500 people.

October 1, 2015                                                                                                                           
CONTACT: Lt. Eduardo Mazariegos(831) 678-5554