WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware Department of Correction employee was found dead after a hostage situation that spanned nearly 20 hours, according to a news release issued by the state Thursday morning.
The employee, identified only as a man, was "found unresponsive upon entry" to the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center, said Jayme Gravell, a spokeswoman with the Department of Correction. He was pronounced dead at 5:29 a.m., according to the department.
The other hostage, who has only been identified as a woman, was safely rescued and is receiving treatment at a local hospital, Gravell said.
Delaware State Police entered Building C, where the hostage situation occurred at 5:06 a.m., according to the release. Gravell said Building C is secured and the Department of Correction continues to operate under emergency procedures.
Building C where the hostage situation occurred has been considered secure and the Department of Correction continues to operate under emergency procedures, Gravell said.
At 10:38 a.m. ET Wednesday, a corrections officer made a radio call for immediate assistance from the Building C Tier B, which houses about 125 inmates. The prison near Smyrna, Del., was put on lockdown at that time, said State Police Sgt. Richard Bratz.
Perry Phelps, the new commissioner of the Delaware Department of Correction, who was confirmed just two weeks ago, said at a Wednesday evening news conference that the radio call activated the Department of Correction Emergency Response team because staffers were taken hostage.
Among the inmates' demands were prison reforms and better living conditions.
Phelps then said that earlier reports of five staffers being held were incorrect. Only four staffers were taken hostage. One officer was released at 2:25 p.m.; at 5:25 p.m. eight inmates were released; and just before 8 p.m., another staff member and 19 inmates were released. On Thursday at about 12:30 a.m., 14 more inmates were released.Read More...
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