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2 Officers Hospitalized After Assault At Tenn. Prison

Posted at 10:57 AM, Apr 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-10 23:28:26-04

Two officers remain hospitalized after a disturbance at Turney Center Industrial Complex in Hickman County.  

The incident involving 16 inmates began around 4 p.m. Sunday. Three corrections officers - identified as Lester Ball, Jesse Shockley, and Paul Nielson - were assaulted during the ordeal.

Four of the inmates involved in the incident have been moved to Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville. The remaining 12 are at Morgan County Correctional Complex, a maximum security facility in East Tennessee.

More: 3 Officers Assaulted In Disturbance At State Prison In Hickman County

Preliminary information indicated that the three were stabbed multiple times during what officials called an “unprovoked assault by several inmates.”

Those individuals may have ties to a security threat group, investigators said. 

Ball and Nielson were immediately removed from the scene, while Shockley was held hostage for three hours.

The Tennessee Department of Corrections Special Operations Unit was able to regain control around 7 p.m.

All three were airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center. No other injuries were reported.

Ball has since been discharged from the hospital. Shockley and Nielson were in stable condition. 

Of the 16 inmates involved in the incident, five were serving life sentences for murder, and seven were convicted killers.

The facility remains on lockdown and visitation has been canceled for the day. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and several other law enforcement agencies are assisting with the investigation.