State police investigate inmate death

PROVIDENCE, RI. – Rhode Island state police are investigating the death of an inmate at the high security center of the Adult Correctional Institution.

Thirty year old Dennard Walker was found unresponsive at 3:30am Thursday. He had been serving a life sentence for the murder of a teenage girl who was about to testify against Walker's half brother in a separate murder case.

Corrections Department spokeswoman Tracy Zeckhausen says it does not appear to be a homicide but nothing has been ruled out.

"That's under investigation. It's a state police investigation at this point. Our internal affaris office will be working closely with them. I'm told they will release a press release tomorrow after they receive the results of the autopsy," says Zeckhausen.

Walker was housed in the high security unit because of his prison behavior and the notoriety of his crime, Zeckhausen says. The 2000 murder of Jennifer Rivera attracted national attention and prompted an overhaul of the state's witness protection program.

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