KEY POINTS

  • Iowa Department of Corrections confirmed two deaths
  • Names of the victims and the inmate have not been released
  • An investigation is into the attack is ongoing

A correctional officer and a nurse died after an inmate launched an attack against staff and other inmates in an Iowa prison Tuesday.

The attack took place in the infirmary of Anamosa State Penitentiary, a maximum prison in the Jones County community of Anamosa, around 10:15 a.m, Iowa Department of Corrections said in a statement as per The Associated Press.

State police and the department are still investigating and confirming the details of the incident. The names of the victims and the inmate behind the attack have been withheld pending investigation and family notifications, a report from Des Moines Register said.

The department has confirmed that the inmate attacked numerous people in the prison infirmary, including staff and inmates. A correctional officer and a nurse succumbed to their injuries after the attack.

The department has mobilized additional security personnel at the scene and got the inmate under control. Meanwhile, employees started performing first aid on injured individuals while waiting for the arrival of the paramedics.

These deaths seem to be the first time in more than 50 years that a prison staff member in Iowa was killed by an inmate. The last time was in 1969, when Edward N. Clark, an inmate, assaulted and then stabbed Sam Reed, an Iowa State Penitentiary officer.

There was another large-scale incident in 1981 in which inmates held 12 staff members hostage in the prison. Fortunately, no one was killed that day.

Gov. Kim Reynolds said the entire state is grieving the deaths of the two public servants who had been attacked while fulfilling their duties.

Reynolds assured the public that they will do whatever they can to bring justice to the inmate responsible for the deaths. She added that she wants to bring closure and peace to the families of the attack’s victims.

There are about 900 inmates held in both medium and maximum security wings in the state penitentiary. Its inmates include those who have been convicted of violent crimes, such as murder. Additionally, there are over 300 staff members throughout the prison.

prison-553836_640 (2) The intern reportedly posed for a selfie with a special key that locks all the cells and the passage doors to the prison. Photo: pixabay