Around 650 Texas inmates evacuated after fire breaks out at Huntsville prison

Harris Marley

Global Courant
Over 650 inmates were evacuated after a fire broke out at a Texas state prison in Huntsville.No one was injured in the fire and inmates were moved to other areas of the prison, according to initial reports. The fire appeared to be confined to the prison’s third floor and attic.

Fire broke out Friday morning at a state prison in Texas, forcing more than 650 inmates to evacuate but injuring no one, an official said.

The inmates were moved to other areas of the prison in Huntsville, about 65 miles north of Houston, according to Amanda Hernandez, a spokesperson for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

The department initially reported 320 evacuations, but Hernandez said additional inmates were moved as a precaution. All inmates and staff are safe and accounted for, Hernandez said.

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The fire appeared to be confined to the attic and third floor of the administration building and the attic of a unit that houses inmates, Hernandez said.

The prison in Huntsville, Texas, is shown on March 5, 2014. The Huntsville prison had to evacuate 650 inmates after a fire broke out on the third floor and in the attic on Aug. 25. 2023. (Brett Coomer/Houston Chronicle via Getty Images)

The fire was contained by later in the morning, but firefighters were “still chasing small fires in some concealed spaces,” Huntsville Fire Chief Greg Mathis said.

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The cause of the fire will be investigated once it is completely extinguished, Hernandez said.

The 174-year-old Huntsville prison houses about 1,600 prisoners and is where condemned inmates are executed.

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The fire is not expected to affect the execution schedule, Hernandez said. The next one is set for Oct. 10, when Jedidiah Murphy is to be put to death for killing a 79-year-old woman in 2000.


Around 650 Texas inmates evacuated after fire breaks out at Huntsville prison

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