Member of San Quentin Six Killed by Fellow Inmate in California Prison Riot
updated 08/13/2015 AT 10:30 AM EDT
•originally published 08/12/2015 AT 07:55 PM EDT
Hugo Pinell, 71, was killed by a fellow prisoner, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokeswoman Dana Simas told the Associated Press. The slaying triggered a massive riot, which involved about 70 prisoners before guards were able to break it up.
"He was definitely the target," Simas said of Pinell, declining to offer more details about the alleged attacker. Once Pinell was jumped, "everyone else joined in," Simas said.
Pinell was a member of the "San Quentin Six," a group of six inmates who undertook a bloody prison escape attempt 40 years ago that left six people dead, including George Jackson, founder of the Black Guerrilla Family prison gang.
Pinell helped slit the throats of the guards during the infamous escape attempt. Correctional Officer Urbano Rubiaco Jr., a guard who survived the attack, later testified that Pinell used a knife made of razor blades to slice his neck.
"He said 'I love you pigs' and then he cut my throat," Rubiaco said at the time.
Authorities said "inmate-made weapons" were used in Wednesday's riot, according to KXTV. No staff members were hurt, but the 11 injured inmates were taken to local hospitals with stab wounds.
Corrections officers used pepper spray and fired off warning shots from rifles to stop the riot, the Los Angeles Times reports.
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