James von Brunn, the 89-year-old accused of murdering a guard at Washington DC's Holocaust Memorial museum has died in a prison hospital.

Von Brunn died shortly before 1pm local time in a North Carolina prison hospital according to reports from the Associated Press.

Von Brunn's lawyer, A.J. Kramer, called the death a sad end to a tragic situation, but declined further comment.  

Von Brunn was awaiting trial for the killing of security guard Stephen T. Johns at the museum on June 10 last year.