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Inmate sentenced in guard’s shanking

Posted on July 22, 2021

Local news
The Franklin County Law Enforcement and Detention Complex in Louisburg is shown in an image from the sheriff’s office website. A federal judge recently sentenced a man convicted of stabbing a guard with a shank to 17 years in prison.

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The Franklin County Law Enforcement and Detention Complex in Louisburg is shown in an image from the sheriff’s office website. A federal judge recently sentenced a man convicted of stabbing a guard with a shank to 17 years in prison.

RALEIGH — A federal inmate has received a 17-year sentence for shanking a guard in the Franklin County jail.

Troy Lamont Powell, 32, also known as Gutter, stabbed a guard with a 6-inch makeshift metal knife at the Franklin County Detention Complex in Louisburg, according to a press release issued by Don Connelly, public information officer for the U.S. Attorney Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina.

Powell, from Ahoskie, drove the shank into the guard’s ribcage. The Franklin County jail held Powell on federal gun and drug charges under a contract with the U.S. Marshals Service to house federal inmates.

Powell — who pleaded guilty in April — stabbed the guard on Dec. 30, 2019, according to court documents and other information provided by prosecutors.

“The shank was later recovered from Powell during a search of his clothing,” Connelly said in the release. “Powell continued to make threatening statements to other jail guards before being transported to another jail.”

U.S. Marshal Michael East said any type of assault on a law enforcement officer is intolerable.

“This case is exceptionally egregious because the detention officer was just trying to assist Mr. Powell and the attack was completely unprovoked,” East said.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the U.S. Marshals Service investigated the case, with Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura S. Howard acting as prosecutor.

“We will aggressively prosecute any federal inmate who has a weapon or who attacks a guard,” said acting U.S. Attorney G. Norman Acker III. “Such behavior is totally contrary to our system of justice and the rule of law.”

U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III handed down Powell’s sentence in a Raleigh federal courtroom.

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