A San Jose inmate was found dead inside a San Quentin State Prison on Monday according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Herminio "Spankio" Serna, 53, was found unresponsive in his one-person cell. Prison personnel gave him CPR and called an ambulance but he was pronouced dead at about 8:35 p.m. The cause of his death is still pending.
Serna was a Nuestra Familia gang member. The gang members killed associates who disobeyed orders and witnesses in order to control San Jose's drug trade and command respect on the streets.
Serna was sentenced to death on Nov.21, 1997 for the murders of Esteban Guzman, Marco Baca and Sheila Apodaca.
Since California reinstated capital punishment in 1978, 79 inmates have died of natural cause, 24 of suicide and 15 executed.