INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A sheriff’s deputy died Monday after being attacked in a van by a prison inmate he was just taking to a hospital visit in Indianapolis, authorities said.
Marion County Sheriff’s Deputy John Durm, 61, died after the attack at Eskenazi Hospital, Sheriff Kerry Forestal said.
The inmate, Orlando Mitchell, 34, attacked Durm while the van was in the sally gate, or fortified entrance, of the south city adult prison, police said.
Mitchell then stole the van and crashed into a utility pole before other officers took him back into custody. Mitchell was reported to Eskenazi Hospital in stable condition.
Indianapolis Police Department is investigating the incident as “first-degree murder,” Officer Shane Foley said.
Mitchell has been in prison since September 2022 awaiting trial for the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Krystal Walton. A phone message was left for an attorney representing Mitchell asking for comment.
Durm was a 38-year veteran of the sheriff’s department. His survivors include a wife and four children.
Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb issued a statement, saying, “It pains me to once again put into words the incredible loss of a man in uniform who kept Hoosiers safe from harm.”
Durm’s death comes a week later Say it City Sgt. Heather Glenn was fatally shot at Perry County Memorial Hospital in the Ohio River community by a man suspected of domestic violence, Sean Hubert, 34, who was then killed by other officers.
One of the officers who took Mitchell into custody suffered minor injuries and was treated at the scene.