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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Michael D. Crews

Florida Department of Corrections
Timothy H. Cannon, Interim Secretary


Press Release
March 19, 2012
For More Information
Contact: Press Office
(850) 488-0420

Correctional Officer Stabbed to Death by Inmate at Columbia Correctional Institution, Second Officer Injured

Columbia County, Fla. The Department of Corrections is confirming a correctional officer was killed in the line of duty March 18, 2012 at Columbia Correctional Institution.

The correctional officer killed in the line of duty: 6 year DC employee, 24 year old Sergeant Ruben Thomas.  Witnesses say he was stabbed in the neck by inmate Richard Franklin with a handmade weapon.

Also, Correctional Officer William Brewer was assaulted in the incident. Brewer was taken to the hospital and has since been released. He will require further medical attention.

Inmate Franklin was convicted and sentenced to life for murder.  He was received by the Department in 1995.

“The Department is going to mourn the loss of Sgt. Ruben Thomas. Sgt. Thomas is described as a solid and highly respected member of the Agency and will be remembered in the highest regard,” said Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Ken Tucker. “Our condolences go out to his family.”

The Department has no further comment at this time and more details are not yet being released as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is taking over the investigation per normal protocol.