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Chief of Delaware prisons leaves post, takes new state job

The head of the division in charge of Delaware’s prisons has left the post in the wake of a fatal inmate riot and hostage taking

DOVER, Del. (AP) The head of the division in charge of Delaware’s prisons has left the post in the wake of a fatal inmate riot and hostage taking. Department of Correction officials confirmed Friday that Christopher Klein has been replaced as chief of the Bureau of Prisons. Klein has been given a new job as deputy principal assistant at the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security, which is led by Robert Coupe, his former boss at the Department of Correction.

As bureau chief under both Coupe and current DOC commissioner Perry Phelps, Klein oversaw Delaware’s four prisons, including the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center. Inmates took over a building at Vaughn on Feb. 1, taking four staffers hostage. Correctional officer Steven Floyd was killed. The former warden at Vaughn, David Pierce, was reassigned after the prison riot. Officials announced Friday that Air Force Lt. Col. Dana Metzger has been named warden at the Vaughn prison.

Klein, meanwhile, is being replaced as bureau chief of prisons by Steven Wesley, the current warden at Howard R. Young Correctional Institution in Wilmington.

“We look forward to working with Bureau Chief Wesley, and he will be a tremendous asset to the department in his new position,” said Geoff Klopp, president of the Correctional Officers Association of Delaware. Klopp said he also looked forward to meeting and working with Metzger, a 22-year Air Force veteran who currently serves as commander of the security forces squadron at Dover Air Force Base.

“Warden Wesley and Lt. Colonel Metzger are proven leaders who have earned the respect of their colleagues and communities over the course of their careers,” Phelps said in a prepared statement. Meanwhile, Delaware State Police are continuing a criminal investigation into the inmate uprising and Floyd’s death.

Gov. John Carney also has ordered a separate, independent investigation. A preliminary report is expected by June 1.

Floyd’s family and five other officers who survived the prison riot have sued the state in federal court, blaming the deadly uprising on security and staffing problems that officials had ignored for years.

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Truck burned at THP impound lot was evidence in a fatal crash investigation

CLOSETruck Burned At THP Impound Lot Was Evidence In A Fatal Crash Investigation Truck Burned At THP Impound Lot Was Evidence In A Fatal Crash Investigation

Authorities believe someone intentionally burned a semi-truck stored at a Tennessee Highway Patrol impound lot as evidence in an investigation. That’s not the first time vehicles have been damaged at the lot. Travis Dorman

Truck Burned At THP Impound Lot Was Evidence In A Fatal Crash Investigation

A torched semi-truck that was to be used as evidence in an investigation wasn’t the first vehicle damaged at a Tennessee Highway Patrol impound lot in North Knoxville. Vandals apparently smashed windows with rocks, removed tires and license plates and spray-painted vehicles.(Photo: Travis Dorman / USA TODAY Network – Tennessee)

A semi-truck burned in an arson fire at a Tennessee Highway Patrol impound lot in North Knoxville this week was being held as evidence in a fatal crash investigation, authorities confirmed. The rig, which appeared to have been destroyed in the Wednesday night fire, had been seized as evidence in an a recent traffic-related death in Roane County, Cortney Dugger, spokesman for 9th Judicial District Attorney General Russell Johnson’s office, confirmed Friday. Dugger declined to specify the case, citing an ongoing investigation. No charges have been filed in connection with the death yet, he said.

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Coast Guard basing two new $73 million cutters in Columbia estuary

The 154-foot Sentinel-class cutters replace the 1980s-era 110-foot Island-class patrol boats

Coast Guard Basing Two New  Million Cutters In Columbia Estuary

U.S. Coast Guard

The Sentinel-class fast response cutter is a new Coast Guard patrol boat that is capable of deploying independently to conduct missions that include port, waterways and coastal security; fishery patrols; search and rescue; and national defense. Named after Coast Guard enlisted heroes, the cutters are replacing the aging Island-class 110-foot patrol boats. The U.S. Coast Guard has selected Astoria as the new home for two fast response cutters by 2021, a decision that will expand the agency s footprint in the Columbia-Pacific region and provide a significant financial boost to the Lower Columbia River area. The 154-foot Sentinel-class cutters each costing $73 million replace the 1980s-era 110-foot Island-class patrol boats, which are nearing the end of service life.

Each of the new cutters will require two officers and 20 crew. Upon stationing a new Sentinel-class cutter in Ketchikan, Alaska, earlier this month, Coast Guard Adm. Charles D. Michel said, At 154 feet, the Fast Response Cutter has incredible improvements over its predecessor. The longer length makes for a more stable platform to conduct operations from launching small boats in heavy seas to remaining at sea for longer periods of time.

This new cutter is also capable of going farther increasing operational range from 1,853 nautical miles to 2,500 nautical miles. As a result, Alaska will see a 19 percent increase in patrol boat operations. The Fast Response Cutter also achieves speeds of nearly 30 knots for longer periods of time, besting the cutter it is replacing.

Paraphrasing the ship s commanding officer, the ship can go farther than before and get there faster than before. Astoria had been competing with Newport for the two new cutters.

The Coast Guard has been looking at the 17th Street Dock or Tongue Point for the new cutters, but an official said a decision has not been made on where in the city the cutters will homeport. The new cutters have not been named, according to the Coast Guard, but others in the class have been named for enlisted personnel who distinguished themselves. The Coast Guard said a 110-foot Island-class patrol boat, the Orcas, will continue to operate in Coos Bay until the new cutters arrive in Astoria in 2021.

The Coast Guard s Sector Columbia River headquarters and Air Station Astoria are based at the Astoria Regional Airport in Warrenton. Astoria is also home to the Coast Guard s 210-foot medium endurance cutters Steadfast and Alert, and the 180-foot buoy tender Fir, but does not have one of the Island-class patrol boats.

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