Pennsylvania prison guard Eric Williams was killed Monday night when an inmate attacked him with a homemade weapon.
According to the Associated Press, Williams, 34, who had worked with the US Bureau of Prisons for less than two years, suffered blunt head and neck trauma and multiple stab wounds and cuts. Lackawanna County Coroner Timothy Rowland declared the death a homicide after an autopsy was performed Tuesday.
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"This is clearly the darkest day in our institution's short history, and we are in shock over this senseless loss of a colleague and friend," said Canaan Penitentiary Warden David Ebbert, reported The Washington Post.
The bureau said authorities had placed the prison on lockdown after the incident and that "the community was never in danger."
According to BBC News, at least three inmates have been killed at Canaan since it opened in 2005. The federal prison houses 1,350 male inmates.
Williams was working in a housing unit when he was attacked Monday night. Other staff members restrained the unnamed inmate and Williams was brought to the hospital, but he was pronounced dead shortly before midnight.
He is the first federal prison guard to be killed on the job in nearly five years.