Accused killer Soria Jr. transferred to maximum security prison |

Accused killer Soria Jr. transferred to maximum security prison

Thomas Soria Jr. was transferred earlier this month from a medium security prison to Ely State Prison, a maximum security prison.

After being sentenced July 24 to life in prison without the possibility of parole for participating in the kidnapping and murder of 9-year-old Krystal Steadman, Soria was taken to Northern Nevada Correctional Center in Carson City to begin his reception process. On Aug. 8 Soria was transported to Ely.

“When you’re facing life without the possibility of parole at 19 you’re an escape risk and we have to get to know someone like that,” said John Slansky, assistant director of Nevada Department of Prisons. “The place we can exercise the most control and supervision is Ely.”

During the “reception process,” an inmate is evaluated for 30 days. “We need to know everything we possibly can about him and every inmate to make the best decisions we can,” Slansky said.

During the reception period, Soria was allowed out of his cell 10 hours each week, Slansky said. After his evaluation is complete, there are eight levels that he can progress through with good behavior. Each level allows the inmate more privileges that may include working a 6- to 8-hour day in a drapery factory at the prison.

“It’s more the movies than reality,” Slansky said. “A sex offender is not unusual … but a high profile case like this or any other case involving children, the inmates who do these things are not well thought of in the inmate population. That sort of crime is reprehensible in prison and out of prison.”

Slansky said no special precautions will be taken to protect Soria, but that the prison does have procedural precautions.

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