In the 100+ years state corrections records have been kept, there have been 13 staff members killed in the line of duty. These are their stories.
Doris Taylor - Thumb Correctional Facility May 17, 1998: Doris Taylor, who worked as a food service supervisor at the Thumb Correctional Facility, was stabbed to death by an inmate on this date. Taylor had worked at the prison for 11 years and had announced earlier that she planned to retire at the end of the year.
Tammy Sperle - Huron Valley Men's Facility February 5, 1996: Tammy Sperle, a civilian prison worker who operated the prison's store, was found strangled to death on this date in a caged-in area of the store. After a two-year-long investigation, it was found that she was murdered by an inmate who was in prison for attempted murder. He was a former employee at the store and was apparently
Jack Budd - State Prison of Southern Michigan December 27, 1987: Jack Budd was stabbed to death by a prisoner at the State Prison of Southern Michigan on this date. The prisoner was being escorted to the ground-floor shower stall but broke free and attacked an officer who was escorting him. The prisoner then ran down the cell block, where he found
Josephine McCallum - State Prison of Southern Michigan March 24, 1987: Josephine McCallum, a rookie corrections officer at the State Prison of Southern Michigan, was found raped, strangled and beaten on this date in an auditorium stairwell. Though there were no staff witnesses, evidence pointed to a single attacker, who was later found guilty of committing the crime and sentenced to prison for first-degree
Earl DeMarse - Marquette Branch Prison September 25, 1973: On this date, 55-year-old Earl DeMarse became the first corrections officer to be murdered at a Michigan institution. DeMarse, who had been an employee with the department for 26 years, was pronounced dead on arrival at a local hospital after being stabbed while he worked in the
Joseph D. Crater and Max H. Hinckley - State Prison of Southern Michigan Of the twelve employees killed while on duty, two were killed by accident. On March 31, 1967, officers Joseph D. Crater and Max H. Hinckley were victims of an explosion at the State Prison of Southern Michigan. Hinckley, a 57-year-old native of Paw Paw, and Crater, a 25-year-old ex-marine, were
Bernard Fancher - State Prison of Southern Michigan April 28, 1960: On this date, Bernard Fancher, an assistant athletic director at the State Prison of Southern Michigan, was stabbed to death by a prisoner who was described as having a long grudge against him. According to witnesses, Fancher was sitting at his desk when a prisoner approached him swinging a baseball bat. Fancher and another employee ran from the
Fred Boucher - State Prison of Southern Michigan November 5, 1939: Chief Inspector Fred Boucher was shot dead on this date while trying to stop an escape attempt by six prisoners at the State Prison of Southern Michigan. Boucher was inside the main prison when he was alerted to the attempt. Using a rope and a bent piece of pipe, five of the prisoners had climbed the wall successfully, and three of them ran to a waiting automobile. Holding a revolver, Boucher rushed
Dr. A. W. Hornbogen - Marquette Branch Prison August 27, 1931: In a escape attempt turned tragedy, Dr. A. W. Hornbogen was shot and killed on this date at the Marquette Branch Prison. Four inmates armed with guns and ammunition that had been smuggled into the prison tried to shoot their way out of the facility, killing Hornbogen and an inmate nurse in the process. Hornbogen was temporarily filling in as a prison
Warden T.B. Catlin and Deputy Warden Fred Menhennett - Marquette Branch Prison December 12, 1921: This was the only time in the history of the department that a warden and deputy warden of a Michigan prison were killed by inmates. Warden T.B. Catlin and Deputy Warden Fred Menhennett, of the Marquette Branch Prison, were both stabbed by prisoners. Menhennett died at the scene, while Catlin lived for six more weeks. The attack occurred during a Sunday afternoon movie showing
Deputy Gate Keeper George W. Haight - Michigan State Prison at Jackson March 27, 1893: Deputy Keeper George Haight was killed after an inmate poisoned his food with a mixture of opium and prussic acid (cyanide) at the Michigan State Prison, in Jackson, during an elaborate escape attempt. This was the first employee to be killed in the line of duty for the Michigan Department of Corrections.