Wife frees inmate husband, kills guard in Tenn. – Yahoo! News
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (Reuters) – A former prison nurse opened fire on guards escorting her shackled husband from a Tennessee courthouse on Tuesday, killing one guard and escaping with her husband in a sport utility vehicle, authorities said.
Convict George Hyatte, 34, shouted “shoot ’em” to wife Jennifer Hyatte, 31, and she opened fire with at least six shots from a handgun, scattering dozens of witnesses outside the Roane County courthouse in Kingston, Kingston Police Chief Jim Washam said.
Three bullets struck guard Wayne “Cotton” Morgan, 56, who died at a hospital.
Morgan was one of two guards escorting the shackled and handcuffed Hyatte back to a prison van in the courthouse parking lot following his arraignment on aggravated burglary charges.
Hyatte climbed into the SUV being driven by his wife and the two sped off while a guard returned fire. The vehicle was found nearby with three bullet holes and blood on the driver’s side, indicating Jennifer Hyatte may have been wounded, Washam said.
George Hyatte was in court to be tried on an outstanding burglary charge. He had served two years of a 35-year sentence for robbery and assault convictions.
Jennifer Hyatte was once a nurse under contract to the Tennessee Department of Corrections in Tiptonville, but her contract was terminated when she struck up a relationship with inmate George Hyatte, according to a department spokeswoman.
“There is a complete and thorough manhunt for the escapee and his wife Jennifer,” Amanda Sluss said.
Kingston is 35 miles west of Knoxville in eastern Tennessee.