At approximately 10:00 a.m., state prisoner Dominick Maldonado, 25, used a pair of scissors to take a guard hostage in the prison’s garment industry program area, according to WDOC spokesman Chad Lewis. As he did so, his accomplice, prisoner Kevin Newland, 25, drove a forklift through the doors of the industry work area and into the perimeter fence in an attempt to break out. A guard shot and killed Newland outside the perimeter of the prison. Maldonado released his hostage shortly thereafter, said Lewis. The guard suffered only minor injuries.
Newland was serving 45 years for first-degree murder, while Maldonado is serving a 163-year sentence for a 2005 shooting incident at a Tacoma mall. Both had prepared for the escape by sewing food, containers of water and medications into their clothes. Maldonado was subsequently transferred to the Stafford Creek Corrections Center and placed in an “intensive management” unit.
It was later revealed that Newland and Maldonado had records of institutional misconduct, including possession of a razor blade, and were classified as close security – just below maximum. The union representing Washington prison guards questioned why they were allowed to participate in the industry program. “Why were they working in that area given their violent histories?” asked Jim Smith, a union attorney.
Security changes have since been made by the WDOC. Newland’s death was the first time a Washington prisoner had been fatally shot since 2003, which also involved an attempted escape.
Sources: Associated Press, www.komonews.com, http://news.opb.org
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