Hostage Takers Identified

By: Mike Tolbert
By: Mike Tolbert

Around 8 p.m. Sunday night, an inmate called NewsChannel Seven claiming he and several other inmates had taken hostages, a prison guard and two or three nurses. The inmates’ names were Kevin Winslett, James Norton, Matthew Coffin and Kevin Nix.

It happened in the medical wing of the jail. The inmate claims they were protesting bad living conditions. Reportedly, they used knives, shivs, which are homemade weapons, and other metal objects.

After the inmate told us about the hostage situation, NewsChannel Seven called the Sheriff's Office to report the incident. Soon after, EMS, dozens of police and SWAT teams moved in and negotiations began. Reportedly the inmates asked for pizza and cigarettes and a cell phone, and once their demands were met they began releasing hostages.

However, negotiations soon broke down leading an inmate to threaten the life of one of the hostages. SWAT teams then moved in Nix and Norton were injured but treated and released.

Nurse Amy Hunt was shot in the leg and possibly the stomach. As of Monday, Hunt was in an intensive care unit at a local hospital after having two surgeries.

The standoff ended around 8 a.m. Monday morning. Some of these inmates have made news recently. Matthew Coffin briefly escaped from the jail a few weeks ago and Kevin Nix has a long history of crime in Taylor and Bay County.

Also during the hostage situation inmate Mark King apparently overdosed on drugs in the medical wing. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the incident.


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