“The officer was frankly lucky to survive. The attack was brutal.” That is the official word regarding the stabbing of a prison warden at Full Sutton prison in East Yorkshire on Sunday. According to The Telegraph, the stabbing was a copycat crime, inspired by murder of soldier Lee Rigby, who was hacked to death and beheaded by terrorists last week.
Three prisoners reportedly held the warden hostage during a four-hour stand-off with guards before stabbing him. The attack is said to have left the officer “badly shaken.” A female prison guard who tried to intercede on the warden’s behalf was also injured.
The incident is said to have taken place after a prison imam called for inmates to pray for Rigby. A source told The Sun:
This had all the hallmarks of a pre-planned attack inspired by the Woolwich atrocity. It’s something officials have been fearing could happen for years and now it finally has.
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The warden, described as in his 30s, was reportedly set upon near the kitchens of the jail’s E Wing. A Ministry of Justice (MoJ) spokesman said the incident began at 4.25 p.m. and was successfully resolved at 8.40 p.m. An investigation is ongoing.
The MoJ would not comment on reports that the attackers were Islamic extremists, though last year’s annual report on Full Sutton by the Independent Monitoring Board said the prison had seen an increase in Muslim prisoners. The report also referred to “tensions between them and other prisoners.”
More than a fifth (22%) of the prison’s inmates in 2012 were Muslims.