The eight prisoners, Terrion Warren, Antonio Ball, Charles Hayes, Roy Wilson, William Blount, Lahborn Allah, Clarence Jones, and Cornelius Rogers were all in the jail facing charges ranging from armed robbery to murder. In the wake of the escape attempt, the first four were additionally charged with murder, kidnapping hostage taking, first degree lynching armed robbery, conspiracy to escape and attempted escape on September 22. The other four were charged with lesser escape related offenses.
According to Richland county sheriff Leon Lott, the prisoners overpowered the lone guard, Alvin Glenn, on duty in their 64-prisoner unit. The four charged with the guard's murder dragged him into a cellblock room handcuffing him and securing his radio car keys and car alarm remote control which they hoped to obtain their getaway vehicle. In the process and with other prisoners looking on through a window the guard was beaten and choked to death.
As that was going on other prisoners stacked tables 20 feet high in a unit recreation area and broke through fences covering the area. Ball had released all the prisoners in the unit but only six managed to get out. Just three braved the jump from the roof to the ground; two broke ankles upon landing. Warren alone made it as far as the first perimeter fence where he was apprehended.
Fifth circuit solicitor Barney Giese said no decision had been made about seeking the death penalty. Under South Carolina law, killing or kidnapping a guard can incur the death penalty. Of the eight prisoners only, Allah and Rogers were not charged with either offense.
Source: The State (Columbia, South Carolina)
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