CDCR Investigates Death of Man Incarcerated at Reception Center in California

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is currently investigating the death of a man who was incarcerated at North Kern State Prison.

According to a statement from the CDCR, an officer conducting a welfare check at the prison’s Reception Center approached a cell occupied by two individuals: 25-year-old Ricardo Saldivar and 47-year-old Peter Valencia. This occurred on Monday afternoon at around 2:08 p.m. Sadly, Saldivar was found unresponsive in the cell.

Immediate action was taken by the responding staff to administer life-saving measures. However, despite their efforts, Saldivar was pronounced dead at 2:19 p.m. in the prison’s triage and treatment area.

The official cause of Saldivar’s death has yet to be determined by the Kern County Coroner. However, authorities are treating it as a potential homicide and conducting a thorough investigation.

Both Valencia and Saldivar were transferred to North Kern State Prison from Los Angeles County in May and June 2023, respectively. They were incarcerated for charges related to murder.

Valencia is serving an 18-year sentence for attempted murder as a second striker, while Saldivar received a life sentence with the possibility of parole for first-degree murder, along with an additional sentence for attempted first-degree murder.

In light of the ongoing investigation, movement within the Reception Center has been restricted by prison officials.

North Kern State Prison houses around 3,500 inmates. While the general population section of the facility focuses on providing educational and vocational opportunities to prisoners, the Reception Center is responsible for processing newly arrived inmates from various counties in California.

Within a 90-day period, they compile their criminal records and sentence histories to determine their classification score and appropriate placement within the institution, as outlined by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

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