Inmate convicted of murdering cellmate


A convicted murderer and prison inmate was convicted and sentenced of a first-degree murder that he committed while incarcerated at the Salinas Valley State Prison in 2014, according to the Monterey County District Attorney’s office.

Prosecutors said Horacio Gonzalez, 25, was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison after being convicted of murdering his cellmate in 2014.

Gonzalez asked for immediate sentencing from Judge Lydia Villarreal after she convicted him of the murder. The sentence was doubled to 50 years to life as he was serving time for a previous murder conviction.

According to prosecutors, Gonzalez stabbed Luis Baladez on Oct. 23, 2014 in their cell at the prison. A corrections officer was conducting a routine inspection round when he saw Baladez covered in a white sheet.

At that point, prosecutors said, the corrections officer asked Gonzalez to take the sheet off to see he was in the cell. Baladez was discovered with 19 stab wounds to his neck and chest, leaving punctures in his heart, liver, lungs and carotid artery. A motive was never determined.

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