TDCJ: Inmate from East Texas beaten to death in cell, case under - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

TDCJ: Inmate from East Texas beaten to death in cell, case under investigation

Pete Ayala (Source: TDCJ) Pete Ayala (Source: TDCJ)
Justin Williams (Source: TDCJ) Justin Williams (Source: TDCJ)
NEW BOSTON (KLTV) -

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is investigating after an inmate died when he was assaulted in his cell.

At 4:16 a.m. Sunday, security personnel at the Telford Unit in New Boston were conducting rounds when they noticed Pete Ayala, 29, of Henderson County, was unresponsive in his cell.

TDCJ Public Information Officer Robert Hurst said officials restrained his cellmate, Justin Williams, 22, and removed him from the cell. Staff members began life-saving measures and called 911. Ayala was transported to Wadley Regional Hospital in Texarkana. He was later pronounced dead on June 26 by the attending physician at the hospital.

"Preliminary indications are that Ayala was assaulted by his cellmate," Hurst wrote in a statement.

The Office of the Inspector General-TDCJ is investigating the case as a homicide.

Ayala was transferred to the Telford Unit in December 2009 to serve a 40-year sentence for murder with a deadly weapon. His cellmate, Williams, was transferred to the unit in November 2016 to serve a 50-year sentence for murder with a deadly weapon.

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