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Death row inmate found dead in San Quentin cell

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A San Quentin State Prison death row inmate was found dead in his cell Saturday, a prison spokesman said Monday.

Miguel Angel Magallon, who was convicted of killing Los Angeles County Office of Public Safety Capt. Michael Sparkes in 2004, was found unresponsive in his cell at 6:17 a.m. Saturday and was pronounced dead at 6:49 a.m., Lt. Sam Robinson said.

Magallon, 35, was sentenced to death on Oct. 15, 2009, and had been on death row since Oct. 26, 2009. An autopsy will be conducted to determine his cause of death.

Since 1978, 79 condemned inmates have died from natural causes, 26 have committed suicide, 13 were executed in California and 11 have died of other causes. The cause of death of five San Quentin death row inmates is still pending.

Last month, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order effectively ending the death penalty in California, at least during his time in office.

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