One hostage dead; Stand off ends at Delaware prison

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A hostage situation at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center came to an end Thursday morning.

Delaware State Police entered Building C of the facility around 5:00 a.m. Thursday morning.

They were able to rescue one of the hostages, but another Department of Corrections officer was found unresponsive and later pronounced dead.

It happened at Delaware's largest prison, the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna. State police said it happened in Building C.

As first reported last night on Action News at 10 on PHL-17, one of the hostages was released four hours after the ordeal started, then a second hours after that.

According to reports one of the officers appeared to have been beaten and was taken to a hospital with non life threatening injuries.

Some of the inmates were also released, but it's unclear if they were being held against their will. Dozens of officers have surrounded the building.

They've been working to try and end the situation peacefully. They've been using radio to communicate with the hostage takers.

According to a local newspaper, it appears that inmates are demanding prison reforms, mentioning improper sentencing and inmate oppression.

All of Delaware's State prisons have been put on lock down while hostage negotiations continue.

Delaware Governor John Carney said he's been trying to comfort the families.

"Our focus throughout the day has been on the safety of our correctional employees and will continue to be our focus," said Governor Carney. "I've talked to their families, as you can imagine it has been very difficult for them as well."

The number of the hostage takers remains unclear.


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