Smyrna, DE – Delaware Department of Corrections Sgt. Steven Floyd, age 47, was found dead Thursday morning, February 02, 2017 in the aftermath of a massive prison riot.
According to NBC 10, Sgt. Steven Floyd was found unresponsive about 5:06 AM when Delaware State Police breached C Building at the John T. Vaughn Correctional Center. Several inmates, some with sharp weapons, had taken four DOC Officers and other inmates hostage on Wednesday morning. The standoff lasted for about almost 20 hours.
In a statement, the DOC said that inmates had apparently used small metal foot lockers filled with water as heavy blocks to build a wall at entrances to C Building. Police were unable to enter the building until a backhoe was used to finally enter the building. Within two minutes, a female hostage had been rescued along with a female counselor and the building was re-secured. All 120 inmates from the building are considered suspects.
The investigation into the incident is ongoing, and it is not known yet how the inmates gained control. It is also not known yet if the uprising was a planned or a spontaneous event. There are multiple cameras inside the facility and their video footage will be useful in the investigation.
A message was delivered in two phone calls to the Wilmington, Delaware newspaper The News-Journal, which blamed President Trump for the rebellion, according to The Washington Post. In that message, the inmates said “Everything that he did. All the things that he’s doing now” and “We know that the institution is going to change for the worse.”
This same information and also demands for budget accountability, rehabilitation and education were also demanded during negotiations with police. While negotiations were ongoing, police were also preparing a tactical plan to regain control of the building. Police were extremely worried about the status of Sgt. Steven Floyd and inmates stalled when asked. They were aware that the female hostage DOC Officer was alive but could get no response about Sgt. Floyd.
Two hostages were released separately, one on Wednesday afternoon, and one on Wednesday night, along with several inmates. Their names were not released. The second hostage that was released remains hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.
Three maintenance workers who initially hid in the basement eventually made their way to the roof and were rescued on Wednesday night. A female counselor was also rescued Thursday morning. She had been shielded by some of the inmates. Her name was not released and she was taken to a hospital for evaluation and later released.
None of the inmates were injured during the incident, and it is still unclear if any were actually ‘hostages’.
A second hostage, also a Department of Corrections Officer, was “safely rescued” and was transported to a local hospital. She was reported to be alert and talking. This DOC Officer was reportedly “shielded by inmates” after negotiations ended and DSP made entry. Her name has not been released.
Sgt. Steven Floyd was a 16-year veteran of the Delaware Department of Corrections. No cause of death or time of death has been released and his body has been taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office, according to WPVI.
Delaware Governor John Carney, Jr. said ” Today we mourn…This is a very sad day across the state of Delaware, with the loss of one of our brave correctional officers.” He also ordered flags to be flown at half-mast and said that he was “praying hard” for the family of the fallen Officer. Governor Carney also said “This serves as a tragic reminder that members of law enforcement risk their lives every day on behalf of the people of Delaware. We will stand by the fallen officer’s family and fellow law enforcement officers during what is an extremely difficult time.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of fallen Delaware DOC Sgt. Steven Floyd, both blood and blue. Godspeed, sir we will take it from here. Thank you for your service.
Sgt. Steven Floyd, your life mattered.