Two North Carolina prison employees killed in attempted prisoner escape identified

Employees injured in attempted prison break in Pasquotank Co.

Employees injured in attempted prison break in Pasquotank Co.

Photo Law enforcement officials descended on the Pasquotank Correctional Institution in Elizabeth City, N.C., after an escape attempt by inmates on Thursday.

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety on Thursday night identified the fatalities as correctional officer Justin Smith, 35, who provided security in the Correction Enterprises Specialty Sewing Plant. But prisons spokesman Keith Acree said officials did several counts after the fire and all 725 inmates were accounted for.

Three other employees remained hospitalized, and four inmates were treated for injuries, officials said.

Members of the Prison Emergency Response Team responded to Pasquotank Correctional Institution from other state prison facilities to assist the local prison staff. Minimum-security prisoners work outside the walls on road gangs for the county recycling department and performing other community labor. The prison is now under control and locked down, with all inmates accounted for in multiple counts.

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Pasquotank Correctional Institution now houses 725 male inmates in close, medium and minimum custody.

The Pasquotank County Sheriff's Office says a call was received just after 3 p.m. Thursday for an attempted escape. "Several employees injured." It added there would be "more info when available". Sentara asked that family of the injured avoid the campus. If they did not, the bus driver took them back to the school.

All afternoon activities at the schools have been cancelled.

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