An inmate was fatally shot Saturday after a corrections officer was taken hostage at the Oklahoma County jail in Oklahoma, authorities said.
“The person who had taken him hostage was shot by an Oklahoma City police officer,” said Aaron Brilbeck, a spokesman for the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office. “Has died”.
The officer, who was not identified, was hospitalized for what were described as minor and non-fatal injuries, Brilbeck said, adding that the injuries did not occur during the shooting.
“He came out of his own free will,” jail administrator Greg Williams told a news conference.
The officer was taken hostage on the 10th floor of the Oklahoma County Detention Center, which was closed around 4:22 p.m., authorities said. The episode lasted less than two hours, Brilbeck said.
Officers were distributing medication when “the prisoner invaded the officer,” Sheriff Tommie Johnson III said at the news conference.
The inmate, whose name was not released, used the officer’s keys to free an unknown number of prisoners, some of whom participated in the hostage-taking, Williams said. The floor houses 37 inmates.
“That’s where the inmates who have really been the hardest to handle are housed,” Williams said.
The sheriff’s tactical unit and city police responded to the scene, Brilbeck said.
The inmate who died may have taken the officer’s cell phone and live-streamed part of the incident on social media, Williams said.
Authorities tried to ease the situation, he said, but when the inmate held an unidentified object around the officer’s neck, at least one Oklahoma City officer opened fire and killed him, Johnson said.
Williams said authorities will investigate whether poor conditions inside the jail may have led to the violence.