MARTINEZ, Calif. — An El Cerrito man has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for fatally beating a jailhouse nurse with a table lamp.
Thirty-eight-year-old Aaron Nygaard was sentenced Friday in Contra Costa County Superior Court, where the judge heard from many of the victim’s relatives and co-workers.
Nygaard pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in connection with the death of 55-year-old Cynthia Palomata of El Sobrante in October 2010.
Authorities say Nygaard was being held in the Martinez Detention Facility for allegedly breaking into a home.
Prosecutors say Nygaard faked a seizure and when Palomata rushed to his aid, he hit her head with a metal lamp, knocking her unconscious. A native of the Philippines, Palomata died later at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek.