A death row inmate convicted in Sacramento County was found dead Thursday morning in his San Quentin cell, prison officials say.
James Karis, 61, was convicted in 1981 for the rape and murder of Peggy Pennington and attempted murder of Patty Vander Dussen. Karis had been on death row since 1982.
Karis, who was single-celled, was found unresponsive and soon pronounced dead.
Prison officials say 57 inmates have died on death row since 1978, when the state reinstated capital punishment. Twenty-one have committed suicide, 13 were executed and six died from other causes.