Soledad – Salinas Valley State Prison (SVSP) administrators are investigating the death of an inmate as a possible homicide.  On March 6, 2012, custody staff found Inmate Damon Valery unresponsive inside his cell.  Life-saving measures were initiated immediately and Valery was transported to a local hospital.  However, he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead at 06:08 a.m.
Valery, 40, was committed from Alameda County in October 1999, with a 25-year-to-life sentence for second-degree murder.  He had been at SVSP since August 2011. 
SVSP staff notified the Office of the Inspector General which has dispatched an investigator to the institution.  Investigators from the Monterey County Sheriff’s Department were contacted regarding the suspicious death and are on site. 
Salinas Valley State Prison opened in May 1996 and is located on approximately 300 acres in Monterey County.  The institution’s mission is to provide long-term housing for both minimum- and maximum-custody male inmates.

For immediate release                                                                                     
March 6, 2012
Contact:  Lt. Michael Nilsson
(831) 678-5500, ext 5554