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CDCR: 3 men serving life sentences kill inmate in Soledad prison

(KRON) — Prison officials are investigating the violent death of inmate Cory J. Benton inside Salinas Valley State Prison in Soledad.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said Benton, 40, was attacked by three other inmates at 3:19 p.m. Sunday. His suspected killers, Alberto T. Valades, Jose L. Valle, and Jimmy M. Martinez, are all currently serving life prison sentences.

Benton was stabbed to death by inmates who used an “inmate-manufactured weapon,” according to CDCR officials. He was pronounced deceased at 4:25 p.m. No one else was injured in the attack.

Valades, Valle, and Martinez were moved into a higher security area of the prison, and other inmates were restricted from the prison yard. The SVSP’s Investigative Services Unit and Monterey County Sheriff’s coroner are investigating.

Unlike his suspected killers, Benton was not serving a life sentence. Benton was convicted in Santa Barbara County in 2012 of assault and street gang crimes. He was serving a 25-year sentence when he was slain.

Valades, 54, was convicted in Los Angeles County in 1997 to serve life with the possibility of parole for second-degree robbery as a third striker.

Martinez, 32, was convicted in Los Angeles County in 2014, to serve life with the possibility of parole for first-degree murder.

Valle, 33, was convicted in Kings County in 2013, to serve life with the possibility of parole for first-degree murder.

There are nearly 2,700 inmates currently incarcerated in Salinas Valley State Prison.

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