Hostage situation at Lee Correctional Institution over, officer released

Published: Sep. 14, 2012 at 1:48 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 24, 2012 at 5:16 AM EDT
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Gate at Lee Correctional Institution (Source: Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield)
Gate at Lee Correctional Institution (Source: Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield)

LEE COUNTY, SC (WIS) - A hostage situation at Lee Correctional Institution is now over and a corrections officer held by inmates has been released.

Clark Newsom, spokesman for the Corrections Department, says a corrections officer was taken hostage by an inmate in the Chesterfield Dorm around 5 p.m. Thursday.

SCDC officials say armed corrections officers rushed the dorm at about 9:40 p.m.. The officer was found in a closet.

Officials say he suffered injuries to his head and arm, but was able to walk out of the facility before he was airlifted to a hospital. "This is a maximum security facility, and you have people there who are serving life sentences," said Newsom.

Newsom said about 120 inmates are in the Chesterfield Dorm, which is beside an area for disciplinary action. He said the inmates are being held for violent crimes such as murder and rape and require high security.

Officials are trying to determine the details of what happened. Investigators are interviewing all 120 prisoners.

In June, inmates housed in the Sumter Unit of the facility overpowered a corrections officer and assaulted him. After about seven hours, Department of Corrections special operations officers used explosives to blow a door down and go into the prison.

The rescued corrections officer was airlifted to the hospital with minor injuries.

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