An incident recently took place at the Falkenburg Road Jail in Tampa, Florida, that could have ended very differently had not some of the inmates stepped up and helped out.
On June 7, shortly before 1 a.m., Hillsborough County Deputy Lillian Jimenez was on the clock, working in a pod of female inmates.
While people in such positions are trained to be aware and cautious, Jimenez didn’t know several inmates were allegedly conspiring to take her out.
The two main culprits were 42-year-old Bridgette Harvey and 37-year-old April Colvin, authorities said in a news release. While Colvin waited in the bathroom, Harvey went to find Jimenez and tell her that Colvin needed her.
Jimenez went to the restroom and can be seen standing in the doorway in a surveillance video that has been shared. As she stood there, Harvey sneaked up from behind and quickly twisted a pillowcase around Jiminez’s neck.
The deputy managed to radio for help — but before backup was able to arrive, other inmates started pouring into the bathroom and stopped Harvey.
Thanks to their intervention, Jimenez was spared serious injuries or death. A medical team treated her on the scene for minor injuries to her neck and throat, but she was mostly unharmed.
Sheriff Chad Chronister and the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office shared the clip of the attack, praising the inmates who stepped up and helped the deputy.
“Last week, an inmate assaulted a #teamHCSO detention deputy, when she used a pillowcase in an attempt to choke her,” the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office posted on Facebook.
“Another inmate conspired with her in the attack. The incident was all caught on camera. Other inmates, who heard the disturbance, came to Deputy Lillian Jimenez’s aid. Thankfully, she only suffered minor injuries.”
“While these inmates put our deputy in danger, there were others who did the right thing by coming to her aid, and for that, I am grateful,” Sheriff Chad Chronister shared.
“Thanks to the quick response of our Emergency Response Team and the inmates who showed compassion to help our deputy, a dire situation turned into the safe rescue of Deputy Jimenez. The assailant and her co-conspirator now face additional charges for assaulting her.”
Not only did Harvey later admit to having planned the attack, but officials also discovered she had a comb she’d sharpened with her teeth.
Harvey has since been charged with aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer, introduction of contraband into a detention facility and escape from confinement.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, records indicate that Harvey was originally booked into the jail at the end of May for an outstanding warrant out of Pasco County after she was charged with home invasion robbery.
Colvin was also charged with escape from confinement, and records show she was initially brought to the jail after being arrested for resisting a law enforcement officer without violence, possession of a controlled substance, petit theft, trespassing and loitering or prowling.
Authorities also determined that two other unnamed inmates were involved in the incident, and all four were moved to solitary confinement.
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