Fresno inmate killed

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(AP Photo)

(AP Photo)

 

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the slaying of an inmate at the county jail.

Officials say 20-year-old Joe Anthony Rodriguez was found unconscious in his cell Wednesday night during a routine inmate count. He was suffering from severe head and body trauma and later died at a hospital.

Detectives believe Rodriguez’s killing was gang-related and occurred when all the cell doors were open to the community area of his pod. The pod had 47 other inmates.

Rodriguez was in custody on a murder charge stemming from the fatal stabbing of a 16-year-old boy in a rival gang in 2011.

Rodriguez’s lawyer, Gerald Schwab, told the Fresno Bee that his client was set to testify that he acted in self-defense. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for Jan. 28.

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