Ex-inmate acquitted in Vaughn riot back in custody

DOVER — A former prison inmate who was accused of leading a fatal riot at Delaware’s maximum-security prison but acquitted on all charges is back behind bars. Authorities at Howard R. Young prison in Wilmington took custody of 33-year-old Roman Shankaras shortly after 5:30 p.m. Saturday after he was arrested by Wilmington police. Shankaras is […]

Impeachment, prison trials top 2019 headlines

DOVER — The Feb. 19 front page of the Delaware State News may be the year’s most memorable. The headline: “Jury returns no convictions.” After almost five days of deliberations, a jury returned two full acquittals and two partial acquittals of four inmates charged with perpetrating the February 2017 Vaughn prison riot and hostage situation […]

Speak Out: Inmate sentencing

A chapter in the ongoing James T. Vaughn prison riot saga came to a close at the sentencing of three inmates, Dwayne Staats, Jarreau Ayers and Royal Downs, on Friday afternoon at the New Castle County Courthouse. On Feb. 1, 2017, a group of masked inmates violently took control of C Building in the Smyrna […]

Inmates sentenced in Vaughn prison riot case

WILMINGTON — A chapter in the ongoing James T. Vaughn prison riot saga came to a close at the sentencing of three inmates, Dwayne Staats, Jarreau Ayers and Royal Downs, on Friday afternoon at the New Castle County Courthouse. On Feb. 1, 2017, a group of masked inmates violently took control of C Building in […]

Sentencing date set for convicted inmates in Vaughn riot trials

WILMINGTON — The three inmates charged and convicted with perpetrating the riot at James T. Vaughn Correctional Center on Feb. 1, 2017, will be sentenced on Sept. 13, according to Judge William C. Carpenter Jr. All three men are already serving life sentences. In October 2017, 18 inmates were charged with perpetrating the riot — […]

DOC contractor, commissioner sued for ‘criminally negligent homicide’

DOVER — The surviving family of an inmate, Luis Cabrera, who died in Department of Correction (DOC) custody last year filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging that prison staff was “criminally negligent” in providing medical care — resulting in his death from a “treatable” condition. Connections CSP — the DOC medical contractor — outgoing Commissioner Perry […]

Speak Out: Riot charges dropped

The Delaware Department of Justice announced Wednesday that it will not pursue the pending charges against the remaining inmates accused of perpetrating the deadly riot at James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in February 2017. •Folks. We need complete video coverage in the prisons. It’s nuts they can not get enough video evidence to convicts these […]

DOC Commissioner Phelps to step down: Vaughn riot, lawsuits, staffing issues plagued brief tenure

DOVER — Delaware Department of Correction Commissioner Perry Phelps announced Friday he’s stepping down as of July 15. No specific reason for the retirement was provided. “When I joined the Department of Correction, I only expected to stay for two years,” Mr. Phelps said in a statement. “I thought I would use my experience as […]

Delaware correction commissioner Phelps to step down

DOVER — Delaware Department of Correction Commissioner Perry Phelps announced Friday he’s stepping down as of July 15. No specific reason for the retirement was provided. “When I joined the Department of Correction, I only expected to stay for two years,” Mr. Phelps said in a statement. “I thought I would use my experience as […]

Shankaras acquitted in Vaughn riot

WILMINGTON — The biggest courtroom in the New Castle County Courthouse was pin drop silent on Thursday as the latest raft of verdicts was delivered in the ongoing Vaughn riot trials. After nearly two weeks of witness testimony and two days of deliberation, the jury decided Roman Shankaras — an inmate charged with perpetrating the […]