Pasquotank Correctional Institute employees injured in attempted prisoner escape

Fires were set in the sewing plant at Pasquotank Correctional Institution in Elizabeth City, the state Department of Public Safety said Thursday afternoon.

Officials said three employees remained early Friday morning in critical condition at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. It wasn't clear how many inmates were involved in the escape attempt.

But prisons spokesman Keith Acree said officials did several counts after the fire and all 725 inmates were accounted for.

Around 3 p.m., inmates started a fire in the prison's Correction Enterprises Specialty Sewing Plant, the North Carolina Department of Public Safety said.

Correction enterprises manager Veronica Darden, 50, and correctional officer Justin Smith, 35, died at high-security men's prison, the state Department of Public Safety said in a statement.

Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks released a statement Thursday that said in part "Our deepest sympathies go out to the families and co-workers of the employees who lost their lives in service to the State".

More news: Al-Qaida-linked fighters launch new attack in central Syria

The prison is an all-male institution with 729 inmates. Fires were set in the jail sewing plant and a few workers were harmed, as indicated by the tweet. Several of the injured are employees.

According to Peter Sengenberger from Sentara Healthcare, six people were taken to Sentara Albemarle Medical Center.

According to WVEC, multiple nearby schools were placed on lockdown as a precaution during the attempted escape.

The statement further added that students who were heading home in school buses were brought back to their respective institutions, to avoid them being home alone, in case the prison-break had succeeded.

After school events and athletics at all three schools were cancelled.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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