Chronology of 1993 Lucasville prison riot
An account of the 11-day siege at Lucasville, Ohio, the nation’s longest deadly prison riot, in which a dozen corrections officers were taken hostage and one guard and nine inmates were killed:
Sunday, April 11, 1993
3 p.m. Disturbance begins as inmates exit recreation yard. They attack a corrections officer, take his keys and open doors to cells on L block.
3:15 p.m. After a violent melee with guards, inmates take control of L block, chanting “we have the keys.” Five corrections officers are taken hostage, some badly beaten. Two others awaiting help are taken hostage just before an armed rescue. Inmates capture another guard and an inmate. The inmate is killed. Two more officers are taken hostage and beaten. In all, 12 officers are taken hostage.
4:45 p.m. Seriously injured officer is released, first of three throughout evening.
6:46 p.m. Severely beaten inmate put on the yard.
9:17 p.m. Inmates begin to place bodies of five slain inmates on yard.
Monday, April 12, 1993
1:45 a.m. Last of inmates roaming yard cleared, housed in K block.
8:05 a.m. Water and electricity turned off to L block.
10:15 a.m. Body of slain inmate put on yard.
Tuesday, April 13, 1993
5:56 a.m. Recording of negotiations begins.
10 a.m. Body of slain inmate whose nephew may have assisted a guard during siege discovered in K block.
4 p.m. K block inmates shout in protest of inadequate food, encouragement to L block and are tear-gassed; officials begin removing uninvolved prisoners to other facilities.
Wednesday, April 14, 1993
3:50 a.m. Police helicopter patrolling the prison complex crashes, three suffer minor injuries.
9 a.m. Inmates hang sheet from L block windows saying hostage will be killed if demands aren’t met, including housing one inmate per cell, more educational opportunities and additional visitation periods. Another account says the threat was conveyed by phone.
10:45 a.m. Prisons spokeswoman states threats against officers are part of “language of negotiations.” According to later testimony, inmates interpret this as state not taking them seriously.
12 p.m. Gov. George Voinovich dispatches Ohio National Guard to prison perimeter.
5 p.m. First food and water, and officers’ prescription drugs, delivered.
Thursday, April 15, 1993
11:05 a.m. Body of Correctional Officer Robert Vallandingham placed on yard by four prisoners.
7:30 p.m. Hostage correctional officer released in exchange for live radio broadcast.
Friday, April 16, 1993
1:35 p.m. Hostage correctional officer released in exchange for live TV broadcast. In it, Muslim inmate repeats demand to eliminate forced racial integration of cells.
Saturday, April 17, 1993
10:40 a.m. Meeting inmate demands, television crew summoned for another live broadcast.
3:40 p.m. Bulldozers moved to prison perimeter, either to collapse any tunnels being dug by inmates or in event of tactical assault.
4:55 p.m. Second delivery of food and water.
Sunday, April 18, 1993
Cleveland lawyer Niki Z. Schwartz, a prisoner advocate, is summoned to aid negotiations.
Warden Arthur Tate signs 21-point agreement to inmate demands.
Family members and union officials hear taped messages from five remaining hostages.
Monday, April 19
3 p.m. Vallandingham buried in Portsmouth at funeral attended by prison officials from across the country.
3:50 p.m. Inmates hang sheet from L block windows indicating they’re trying to end the “ordeal.” Negotiations continue.
9 p.m. Terms of agreement broadcast over loudspeakers throughout the night.
Tuesday, April 20, 1993
12 p.m. Three inmates and Schwartz meet with prison negotiating team at table set up in prison yard.
7:08 p.m. Third delivery of food and water.
Wednesday, April 21, 1993
11 a.m. Schwartz meets with inmate negotiators.
2:50 p.m. Agreement announced.
3:56 p.m. Inmates begin leaving L block. Two more inmates are killed.
10:40 p.m. Five remaining hostages released.
11:20 p.m. Last inmate surrenders.
SOURCE: Testimony of Ohio State Highway Patrol Sgt. Howard Hudson, state’s chief investigator of the riot, in State v. Skatzes, as compiled by Staughton and Alice Lynd; Ohio Civil Service Employees’ Association; AP Research.
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