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James Lee Crummel, San Quentin Death Row Inmate, Found Hanging In Cell

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James Lee Crummel was found hanging in his cell at the infamous San Quentin State Prison that houses many death row inmates.
James Lee Crummel was found hanging in his cell at the infamous San Quentin State Prison that houses many death row inmates.

SAN QUENTIN, Calif. -- California prison officials say a death row inmate convicted of killing a 13-year-old boy has committed suicide.

The state Department of Corrections says 68-year-old James Lee Crummel was pronounced dead Sunday after being found hanging in his cell at San Quentin State Prison.

Crummel had been on death row since being convicted in 2004 of kidnapping, molesting and killing James Wilfred Trotter. The boy disappeared on his way to school in Orange County in 1979.

Prosecutors said Crummel lived on the same Costa Mesa street where Trotter's family lived.

The boy's body wasn't found until 1990, when Crummel told police he'd found a skull while hiking in the Cleveland National Forest in Riverside County. The body wasn't identified until 1996.

Crummel's attorney said at his sentencing that her client couldn't express regret for a crime he did not commit.

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