Man who killed California cellmate gets life in prison

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (AP) — A man who stomped to death his cellmate at Kern Valley State Prison has been sentenced to life in prison without chance of parole.

The Bakersfield Californian says 47-year-old Dennis Bratton was sentenced Tuesday.

Authorities say Bratton killed Andrew Keel at the Delano lockup in 2013, three years after beating and stomping another inmate so badly he needed brain surgery.

Prosecutors had sought the death penalty for Bratton, who’s already serving life for bank robbery but jurors deadlocked 10-2 in favor of capital punishment.

A mistrial was declared and prosecutors waived death instead of retrying the trial’s penalty phase.

Keel’s sister, Jessica McCoy, spoke at the sentencing hearing. She said Bratton has never shown remorse for the killing and that looking at him, she saw only “hatred in his eyes.”

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