Attack at prison – where 70% of inmates are violent felons – leaves nurse and correctional officer dead

ANAMOSA, IA – An attack that took place inside of a prison infirmary on March 23rd, that was reportedly launched by a prison inmate, resulted in a corrections officer and nurse being killed.

Officials have yet to release the identity of the inmate allegedly behind the attack, nor the identities of the victims killed.

According to officials, the incident occurred inside of the infirmary during the morning of March 23rd at the Anamosa State Penitentiary in Iowa. As of now, it’s unclear what exactly led up to the attack in question and officials haven’t commented on how exactly the attack was carried out.

Department of Corrections spokesperson Cord Overton delivered the following comments on the investigation on March 24th:

“We’re still trying to gather as many facts as we can and verify as much as we can. Between now and then, we’ll just be trying to get all the details we can.”

All that has been shared so far, as of this writing, was that a single inmate attacked both staff members inside of the prison infirmary and other inmates, as well.

Danny Homan, who serves as the union president that represents correctional facility employees within Iowa, shared his condolences for the loss of life that occurred at Anamosa State Penitentiary:

“No one should ever have to go to work and worry about whether they will come home or not. Unfortunately for two Iowans who had committed their lives to keeping our communities safe, they won’t be going home tonight.”

Reportedly, the Iowa Department of Corrections and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation are investigating the incident at this time.

The Anamosa State Penitentiary is said to be a prison facility that is designed to house medium to maximum security inmates, collectively hosting 950 inmates and employing 321 staff members.

Governor Kim Reynolds also expressed condolences during a press conference held the morning of March 24th, saying the following:

“I want to ask all Iowans to join me in lifting up their grieving families, friends and colleagues in prayer.

“It’s hard to understand such a senseless loss, but it’s my hope that the prayers of our state may offer some sense of peace and comfort during this difficult time.”

Addressing the loss suffered by the Department of Corrections, Governor Reynolds stated that the entity has the full “support” from her and the greater community:

“This is an extremely difficult situation. You’ve lost two of your own. And I want you to know that all of us stand united and ready to support you.”

According to facility data, roughly 70% of the inmates housed at Anamosa State Penitentiary are convicted violent offenders, with the average sentence served among the population being in excess of 25 years.

This is a developing investigation.

Please follow Law Enforcement Today as we continue to gather further insight into this incident.

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In other news related to inmate-led attacks inside of correctional facilities, Law Enforcement Today shared a report earlier in March about a man charged with killing his adopted daughter being attacked by a group of inmates inside of a Florida jail. 

Here’s that previous report. 


MIAMI, FL  An alleged child murderer awaiting trial was reportedly attacked by a group of five inmates at the Miami-Dade jail earlier in March.

According to officials, the five inmates accused in the beating are now facing charges. 

Officials said that 53-year-old Jorge Barahona was sleeping in his bunk March 1 at the Miami-Dade jail when a group of five inmates attacked him. 

The accused murderer was said to have suffered some bruising to his face, a nosebleed and a small cut on his nose, according to police.

Officials said that the five men who allegedly attacked Barahona did so due to the “nature of his pending charges” and have since been charged with battery by a detainee. 

Barahona is currently awaiting trial for the 2011 murder of his 10-year-old adopted daughter, Nubia. 

Police say that Nubia and her twin brother were abused for several months before Barahona had allegedly beaten Nubia to death.

Authorities had discovered Nubia’s body in the back of Barahona’s pickup on February 14, 2011, along I-95 in Palm Beach County – with her body reportedly stuffed in a garbage bag that was submerged in chemicals.

The young girl’s twin brother, Victor, was inside of the truck’s cab along with Barahona at the time of the discovery, according to police.

Victor was reportedly found alive but unconscious when police happened upon the pickup truck – with officers reporting that Victor was covered in chemical burns on his body. 

Jorge Barahona - Miami Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation
Jorge Barahona – Miami Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation

The young boy had informed authorities that both he and his sister were routinely abused by Barahona and his wife, Carmen. Victor reportedly told police that he could hear his sister being beaten to death while he was tied up in a bathtub in the home. 

Carmen Barahona has already pleaded guilty to her actions involved in the case and is serving a life sentence in prison. She’s reportedly slated to testify against Barahona when his case goes to trial. 

Jorge Barahona’s case was set to begin in April 2020 but due to the pandemic, was postponed to an as-yet undetermined date. He is facing the death penalty if convicted of the child’s murder. 

This case has been rife with controversy due to the state Department of Children & Families having received numerous reports of abuse prior to Nubia’s murder in 2011 and an allegedly inadequate response to those complaints. 

A lawsuit was eventually settled regarding the alleged inaction by the state DCF and Victor reportedly received a $5 million settlement from the state.

With regard to the alleged jailhouse beating of Barahona, the inmates charged in the matter were identified as Armando Verdecia, 21, Hakeem Drane, 24, Klauss Moise, 20, Devaun Spaulding, 27, and Oscar Martinez, 29.


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Author: Gregory Hoyt

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