The James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna, Del. is normally a place of strict rules. The normal routine completely changed on Feb. 1 when inmates took over the prison.
The events of this terrifying situation sound as if they could be on a television show rather than a scene that actually took place. This news story of inmates taking over the largest prison in Delaware gained worldwide attention as people could not believe what was unfolding before their eyes.
It all started when inmates staged a fight. The inmates knew that Sgt. Steven Floyd, Department of Correction veteran of 16 years, would use his radio to call for help in response to the fight.
The moment that Floyd got on his radio was when inmates pushed him into a closet. The inmates then took over Building C, with Floyd being the first hostage.
Two other guards and a female counselor were also taken hostage. Though it is still shocking that the inmates were able to hold four people of authority as hostages, they apparently used “sharp objects” to assist in the takeover of Building C.
One hostage was released around 2:25 p.m. and another around 8 p.m. The inmates were negotiating with a hostage mediator through an officer’s walkie-talkie.
After the release of two of the guards they’d been holding hostage, they said that they needed the water to be turned back on in the prison under the guise of needing it for hygiene and thirst.
The water was turned on as a negotiation tactic, but the inmates had secret plans to use the water to only further protect themselves in this standoff. They filled metal footlockers with water to use as barricades to prevent authorities from storming in.
On Feb. 2, officials used a backhoe to get through the barricades, take back control of the prison, and find the remaining two hostages. They were worried that if they waited any longer, it would become only more difficult to break in because inmates would have more time to build additional barricades.
Amazingly, the female counselor was not injured like the other guards. There were inmates who had taken it upon themselves to shield her from harm.
Sgt. Steven Floyd was found unresponsive and later pronounced dead. After he had been forced into the closet, other guards had started to rush to his aid, but he yelled at them to leave — it was a setup.
Instead of holding onto any hope that they would be able to rescue him from the hostage situation he saw unfolding, he bravely warned them not to enter but to get out of the building immediately. In his last hours, he likely saved many of these other guards from harm or even death.
Nothing but kind words have been spoken about who Floyd was as a husband, father, and corrections officer. The Department of Correction explained that Floyd spent his whole career at Vaughn Correctional.
In 2004 and 2005, he was even recognized for not missing one single day of work. Floyd will be dearly missed by many for his generosity, dedication, professionalism, and fairness.
He will certainly be remembered for his bravery and selflessness in his last hours. The guards he heroically warned to get out of the building will never forget the moment that Floyd saved their lives instead of trying to save his own.
Like us on Facebook – USA Liberty News