Inmate Pleads Not Guilty to Strangling Cellmate

A man dubbed the "Koreatown Slasher" for killing six transients in Los Angeles pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a charge of strangling his cellmate at Tehachapi Prison in Bakersfield.

Joseph Danks, 28, is accused of murdering 67-year-old Walter Holt in his sleep three hours after being placed in the same cell with Danks. Court files include a letter in which Danks told his brother that he had always had a cell to himself during four years of confinement, so he decided to kill Holt.

Correctional officers included a report in which they said Danks told them: "I figure well, if I ever get a chance to kill somebody, I'll just kill them . . . even if it was just an old man." Danks was serving six life terms for slaying transients in the Koreatown section of Los Angeles.

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