Death of Man Awaiting Trial Inside Ventura Jail Ruled Homicide; Cellmate Named as Suspect

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The death of a man inside a Ventura jail cell last week has been determined to be a homicide with his cellmate as the primary suspect, sheriff’s officials said Monday.

Michael Larios Torres, 61, died of blunt force trauma and neck compression after he was assaulted last Thursday at the Pre-Trial Detention Facility located along Victoria Avenue, according to a news release from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office.

Torres had been arrested on suspicion of violating a domestic violence restraining order three weeks earlier and was awaiting a November court date when he was attacked, Sgt. Eric Buschow told KTLA.

The Oxnard man was given emergency aid after being found unresponsive about 6:15 p.m., authorities said. But he was pronounced dead at the scene at 6:55 p.m.

Investigators have determined he died of injuries sustained in the assault, sheriff’s officials said.

Meanwhile, the identity of the suspect is being withheld as authorities continue to investigate.

Buschow said there’s “no rush” to release those details since the suspect is already in custody on suspicion of other charges and not a current “danger to the public.”

Authorities are looking to do more investigating before turning the case over to the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office and releasing more information.

The case is being investigated by the Sheriff’s Office’s Major Crimes Bureau as is protocol for any death within a jail facility.

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