2 prison employees killed, several injured after NC prison attempted escape

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The two prison employees killed in an attempted escape from Pasquotank Correctional Institution on Thursday were a corrections officer and an employee of Corrections Enterprises, the prison industry that operates a sewing plant at the prison, a N.C. Public Safety spokeswoman said.

Authorities early Friday identified two employees killed during an attempted inmate escape from a North Carolina prison.

A spokeswoman for Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Public Schools, Tammy Sawyer said, "We didn't want kids home alone or in transport with the potential situation that was unfolding".

The prison near the northeast North Carolina coast can house almost 900 adult, male felons in both high-security and minimum-custody buildings.

Correction enterprises manager Veronica Darden, 50, and correctional officer Justin Smith, 35, died at high-security men's prison, the state Department of Public Safety said in a statement.

Prison workers did several counts after the fire and all 725 inmates were accounted for, Acree said. The state's Prison Emergency Response Team, a tactical unit, rushed to the facility along with police. Unclear how many inmates set the fire to try to escape.

"Those who work in our prisons do a hard and demanding job that is critical to our safety". Fires were set in the jail sewing plant and a few workers were harmed, as indicated by the tweet.

Ten patients were taken to Sentara Albemarle Medical Center in Elizabeth City, an official with Sentara Healthcare said. There was no immediate word on their conditions.

Northside Elementary, Elizabeth City Middle School and Pasquotank County High School were placed on lockdown, which was lifted just before 5 p.m.

Students were dismissed, but those who ride the bus were required to have a parent at home when the bus arrived. After school events and athletics have been cancelled.

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