Arizona death row prisoner, 56, who beat and strangled an 83-year-old woman with a telephone cord in 1986 dies of coronavirus
- Alfonso Salazar, 56, was on death row for murder and kidnapping and was in hospital since April 21
- Salazar was sentenced to death in 1988 after being convicted, along with another man, for the murder of 83-year-old Tucson resident Sara Kaplan
- Kaplan was found beaten in 1986 and strangled by a telephone cord
- Salazar is the first person sentenced to death in Arizona to die of the corona virus, but the third prisoner in the state to die of the virus
- In front of the Florence prison, about 60 miles southeast of Phoenix, medical care has been described as “poor” and is the subject of a pending lawsuit
- Here’s how you can help people affected by Covid-19
Alfonso Salazar, 56, was on death row for murder and kidnapping and was in hospital since April 21
A prisoner sentenced to death became the third prisoner in Arizona to die of the corona virus.
A federal public defender whose office represented Alfonso Raymond Salazar says the prisoner died in a hospital on Thursday from complications from COVID-19.
Salazar was sentenced to death in the murder of 83-year-old Sara Kaplan in 1986 in Pima County.
Salazar was sentenced to death in 1988 after he, along with another man, beat Kaplan and strangled him with a telephone cord.
They broke into her home by prying open metal security bars from a window, the station added.
Before being taken to hospital on April 21, Salazar was in Florence prison. The prison represents 35 out of 50 coronavirus cases in state prisons.
Florence prison, pictured about 60 miles southeast of Phoenix, has described his medical care as “poor” and is the subject of a pending lawsuit
Federal public defender Dale Baich called the prison’s medical care “poor,” saying it is “the subject of ongoing litigation.”
Salazar was the first death row inmate in Arizona to die of the virus, and federal public defender Dale Baich said seven other death row inmates tested positive for COVID-19.
Baich called the prison’s medical care “poor,” saying it was “the subject of ongoing lawsuits.”
One of the sick prisoners told it KJZZ that he and the others are isolated in a dirty cockroach-infested building.
The Florence facility is responsible for 35 out of 50 coronavirus cases in state prisons.
The Maricopa County Medical Research Office is investigating Salazar’s death and has not yet determined a cause of death.
The Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry Department did not immediately return a call on Friday to request comments.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough, that disappear within two to three weeks, but it can happen in some people, especially older adults and those with pre-existing health problems.