After admitting to molesting nine boys during a weekend church event, a convicted pedophile was murdered in prison.
Cesar Pastrana, a 33-year-old native of Mexico and convicted child molester, was eight years into his life sentence for multiple counts of child molestation when he was murdered behind bars. According to Georgia authorities, Pastrana was killed during a fight with another inmate in Hancock State Prison in Sparta, Georgia, the Daily Mail reported.
Prior to his conviction, Pastrana was a school and church volunteer. He was arrested days after a weekend-long church “lock-in” event at a private Cobb County residence. The event was sponsored by the city’s NorthStar Church, where Pastrana worked with youth as a volunteer, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was accused of having inappropriate contact with several minors who attended the event and an event held the previous year at his home.
Another adult at the church “lock-in” was told Pastrana had molested minors at the event held at his home the prior year, and he was immediately axed from his role by the church after the accusation, but it was too late. According to an arrest warrant, Pastrana had already allegedly caused physical injury to a 14-year-old boy while molesting him at his home the year before.
An original 15-count indictment, charging Pastrana with four counts of aggravated child molestation, one count of aggravated sodomy, and 10 counts of child molestation involving nine boys younger than 16, also referred to incidents of abuse that began as early as 2007. The most recent occurred days before his arrest. Two of the nine children he allegedly targeted were relatives and lived in the same house with him. The other seven, he met through the church.
Cesar Pastrana initially denied the claims against him, but he later pleaded guilty to multiple counts of aggravated child molestation, aggravated sodomy, and child molestation, involving several boys, Marietta Daily Journal reported. He admitted to numerous acts, even more than what the children had alleged. Pastrana, who was 25 at the time, was sentenced to life behind bars.
The convicted pedophile was ordered to serve a minimum of 30 years before he would be eligible for parole. If he were ever to be paroled, Pastrana was to be deported. However, he wouldn’t live to see that day. Instead, Pastrana’s life sentence only lasted 8 years before it turned into a death sentence when he was killed during a prison fight with a fellow inmate. His death is believed to be a homicide, according to a Georgia Department of Corrections spokesman.
“Agents have reason to believe offender Cesar Pastrana died as a result of injuries sustained during an altercation involving another inmate,” GDC said in a statement, adding that an investigation into the death was being conducted as standard procedure. “Medical personnel responded and life-saving measures were performed. He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased.”
Pastrana was reportedly banned from Barber Middle School as a volunteer two years prior to his arrest, Cobb police confirmed, although Cobb County Schools did not reveal the details behind his removal. He was still able to pass a background check before volunteering at NorthStar, according to Reverend Mike Linch, who said church policy prohibits volunteers from being alone with a child “on NorthStar time.”
Although the GDC gave no reason for the altercation with the other inmate, at the time of Pastrana’s death, it was the third reported killing of a convicted child molester in prison in less than a two-month timespan after forty-one-year-old Jonathan Watson admitted to beating and killing two convicted child molesters in a California prison, using another inmate’s cane, just months before.
Watson said he beat one man who was watching children’s programming on a communal TV, then as he went to find a correctional officer, intending to turn himself in, he beat a second man, convicted of child abuse, to death. “As I got to the lower tier, I saw a known child trafficker, and I figured I’d just do everybody a favor,” Watson told Mercury News. “In for a penny, in for a pound,” he added.
“Being a lifer, I’m in a unique position where I sometimes have access to these people and I have so little to lose,” Watson explained in a letter to the news outlet. “And trust me, we get it, these people are every parents’ worst nightmare. These families spend years carefully and articulately planning how to give their children every opportunity that they never had, and one monster comes along and changes that child’s trajectory forever.”
As Robert Hood, a retired prison warden who spent three years in charge of the federal Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado, said, even with criminals that include drug dealers, murders, burglars, and worse, “the person at the bottom of the totem pole,” so to speak, “is the sex offender.” These are the lowest of the low, and perhaps that’s why we all feel a sense of gratification when they receive the punishment they truly deserve in the form of good old fashioned prison justice.