CRIME
10/13/2017 12:07 am ET

2 Dead, Several Injured In Prison Break Attempt In North Carolina

Several inmates set fire to a sewing facility in a fracas that claimed the lives of two prison employees.

Two prison employees were killed when inmates tried to break out of a North Carolina prison Thursday night. Others in the prison were injured.

Inmates at the Pasquotank Correctional Institute in Elizabeth City set a fire at the prison’s specialty sewing plant in an attempt to escape. 

Keith Acree, a spokesman for the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, told HuffPost that “several” inmates were involved in the attempted escape, but he said he could not give an official number.

The injured were “mostly employees, with a few inmates,” Acree said.

Acree would not disclose whether the two deaths were a result of the fire or from fighting, but he confirmed that several inmates intentionally set the fire.

No inmates escaped. The prison, which houses 725 men in various security levels, is under control and in lockdown, the North Carolina Department of Public Safety said.

Sentara Healthcare said in a statement that their hospitals received 10 patients stemming from the prison break attempt. Seven of the patients were taken to Sentara Albermarle Medical Center, while three were transferred to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

It is unclear if the 10 patients included the two fatalities, and HuffPost’s requests for clarification from Sentara Healthcare were not immediately returned.

Up to 30 inmates can work within the sewing plant at one time, producing embroidered logo items, safety vests and other sewn items for Correction Enterprises, a company that sells inmate-made products.

Gov. Roy Cooper issued his condolences for the employees killed in Thursday’s breakout attempt and praised their service.

“Those who work in our prisons do a difficult and demanding job that is critical to our safety. We’re grateful to these fallen prison employees for their service, and we offer our condolences to their families, friends, coworkers and community on this tragic loss.”

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