Texas Inmates Breakout to Save Guard’s Life


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Courtesy NBC

Courtesy NBC

Prisoners breaking out of a holding cell is usually a guard’s worst nightmare, but last week it saved a guard’s life.

The incident occurred in the basement of the District Courts Building in Parker County, Texas. Eight prisoners were being held in a small side room, being watched over by a lone guard. The relationship was anything but adversarial according to those present, with the inmates and the guard joking with each other. But things took a frightening turn when the guard suddenly keeled over.

Inmate Nick Kelton described the scene saying, “He just fell over. Looked like an act. Could have died right there.”

The group of inmates began banging on walls and screaming, attempting to summon help for their jailer. They were eventually able to break out of the room they were confined in and after finding the guard had no pulse they began causing an even larger ruckus, even with the inherent risks in such a plan. Kelton expanded on that fear saying “We were worried they’re going to come with guns drawn on us.”

Kelton’s worry was well founded, as Sheriff’s Sergeant Ryan Speegle said that he and his colleagues didn’t know what they were walking into when they arrived in the basement.


“He had keys, he had a gun. It could have been an extremely bad situation.”

After quickly corralling the inmates back into their cell, paramedics and EMTs quickly moved in and were able to resuscitate the guard.

According to Captain Mark Arnett, the inmates’ actions most likely saved the man’s life. “He could have been there 15 minutes before any other staff walked in and found him.” The guard, who declined to have his name released, is expected to return to work sometime this week.

Though their actions did lead to the holding cell being reinforced, Kelton said he and the other inmates had no regrets about what happened.

“It never crossed my mind not to help whether he’s got a gun or a badge. If he falls down, I’m gonna help him.”

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