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News

'Grim Sleeper' Suspect Punched in Jail by Convicted Murderer

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Antonio Rodriguez said he felt "he had to" attack Lonnie D. Franklin Jr., as the pair were in custody together Friday at Men's Central Jail, reports the Daily News. Rodriguez, 29, had just been "convicted of sexually assaulting and killing a 5-year-old girl." Franklin, 57, is the man believed to be the "Grim Sleeper" serial killer, who "is suspected of raping and killing at least 10 people over the last 30 years."

Rodriguez delivered two punches to Franklin's head. The felon with an extensive rap sheet and family history of abuse and trauma is facing a possible death sentence right now as he goes through the penalty phase of his trial for the 2004 death of his girlfriend's daughter. While testimony this week may point to a brain injury that causes Rodriguez's erratic behavior, his attorney thinks his client "may have scored some credibility points with the other inmates," for socking Franklin.

Both Franklin and Rodriguez are classified as "K-10" or "high-powered" inmates, which means they are not permitted in the general prison population. This designation for Franklin is "because of the notoriety of Franklin's alleged crimes and because of Rodriguez's tendencies toward violence."