Cellmate suspected in death of California prison inmate


An inmate at a Central California prison died Thursday and his cellmate is suspected of killing him, authorities said.

James D. Torres, 67, was found unresponsive in his cell shortly after 5 a.m. at the Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison in Corcoran. Despite life-saving measures he was pronounced dead a short time later, according to a statement from the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

There was no immediate word on the cause of his death but it was being investigated as a homicide and his cellmate, Norbert Arres III, was identified as a suspect, the department said.

Torres was admitted from Sacramento County in 1996 and was serving 50 years for rape of a spouse with force or violence and sodomy with force, according to corrections officials.

Arres, 37, was admitted from Riverside County in 2018 and was serving six years for being a felon or addict in possession of a gun.

The Corcoran prison has more than 4,700 inmates in minimum to high security.

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