Self-proclaimed vampire suspected of killing fellow inmate in prison shower
Authorities are investigating whether a convicted murderer who claimed to be an ancient vampire and drank the blood of his victims after slashing their throats may have killed a fellow inmate in a prison shower.
Joshua Rudiger, 42, has been placed into segregated housing pending an investigation, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Authorities say he was in the showers at the California Health Care Facility in Stockton at the same time that 40-year-old Aaron Coderre was attacked.
Prison staff found Coderre unresponsive about 4:30 p.m. Sunday. They attempted to revive him, but he “succumbed to an injury consistent with being attacked by a weapon,” authorities said.
The death is being investigated as a homicide. Coderre was serving a life sentence with the possibility of parole for first-degree attempted murder, authorities said.
Rudiger, of Oakland, was convicted of second-degree murder and assault after attacking four homeless San Francisco residents in 1998 so he could drink their blood, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
One of Rudiger’s victims died after he slashed her throat, the newspaper reported.
According to the Chronicle, Rudiger has a history of mental illness and told police in a videotaped statement that he was a 2,000-year-old vampire. During the trial, Rudiger’s attorney said his client drank his victims’ blood to obtain “vitality,” the newspaper reported at the time.
Rudiger was sentenced to life with the possibility of parole, according to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. The facility where he is being held provides mental and medical health care “to inmates who have the most severe and long-term needs,” department officials said.
Start your day right
Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.