Timeline of hostage situation at Lewis Complex



Note: In addition to the events detailed below -

The Corrections Command Center received hourly updates (or more frequently, as events warranted) from personnel with the FBI, DPS, Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, and various other local law enforcement authorities.

In addition to overseeing the situation at the Lewis Complex, the Corrections Command Center also received hourly updates from the other nine state correctional facilities to ensure that the hostage situation did not disrupt operations there.

In addition to meetings listed in the timeline with Gov. Napolitano and key staff, Corrections Director Dora Schriro gave phone updates to either Gov. Napolitano or Chief of Staff Dennis Burke every two to three hours (or more frequently, as events warranted).

Numerous phone calls between the inmates and negotiators occurred each day, many without significant progress to report.

This is the best information that we have, but it is an ongoing investigation. Additional information will be developed as the investigation progresses.

Sunday, January 18

2:30 a.m. Members of a kitchen work crew, including Ricky Wassenaar and Steven Coy, are released from their respective cells to report for duty.

3:00 a.m. Wassenaar and Coy enter the kitchen office, where a correctional officer and a civilian food service worker are present.

Wassenar approaches the correctional officer with a shank (a hand-made knife). Coy blocks the door to prevent the food service worker from leaving.

Wassenaar forces the corrections officer to hand over his uniform and equipment, to include a pair of handcuffs.

Coy restrains the food service worker with an electrical cord.

Wassenaar directs the rest of the inmate work crew into the dry storage area and locks the door.

Wassenaar alters his appearance by shaving his beard in the kitchen area and putting on the correctional officer's uniform.

Wassenaar leaves the kitchen while Coy remains.

4:20 a.m. Wassenaar buzzes the gate near the tower. The officer looks at the monitor and sees what is believed to be another officer and lets Wassenaar in the gate and then the tower where Wassenaar overcomes the two correctional officers assigned tothatlocation.

While Wassenaar is in the tower, main control radios the kitchen for a routine safety check known as a “code 20,” Coy directs the corrections officer to respond, “Code 4” (okay).

An on-coming correctional officer enters the kitchen. Coy approaches the officer with a shank and orders him to go into the kitchen office where he observes the first correctional officer restrained to a fixture in the kitchen office and the food service worker restrained, lying on the floor.

Coy removes the second correctional officer's handcuffs and also restrains him to the fixture.
Before
5:00 a.m. In response to a radio call, Coy releases the second correctional officer from the handcuffs to open the kitchen door. After opening the door, the second correctional officer runs out into the dining area. Two correctional officers are in the dining room and confront Coy, who draws the shank and injures one of the officers,

The officer who had been released from the handcuffs runs from the kitchen onto the yard.

Coy chases that officer onto the yard. The two officers who were in the dining room give chase as well, and radio for emergency response.

Coy is stopped in the yard by staff responding to the radio call. He is directed to drop the shank pepper spray is dispensed. Wassenaar fires several rounds into the yard from the base of the tower and Coy runs to the tower. Wassenaar and Coy enter the tower.

5:25 a.m. Southern Regional Operations Director Meg Savage is paged by Lewis Complex personnel and advised of a serious, unspecified inmate disturbance.

5:31 a.m. Lewis Complex duty officer is advised of hostage situations in the dining hall and observation tower of Lewis Morey Unit.

5:34 a.m. Division Director Jeff Hood is notified of the situation.

5:37 a.m. Department of Corrections Tactical Support Unit (TSU) at Perryville is activated and placed on standby.

5:52 a.m. Lewis Complex Warden William Gaspar is notified by Director Hood.

6:30 a.m. Corrections personnel identify the officers who have been taken hostage.

Corrections personnel requests hostage negotiators of the Arizona Department of Public Safety.

6:37 a.m. Dennis Burke, chief of staff to Governor Janet Napolitano, is notified of the incident. He notifies the Governor and key staff.

7:00 a.m. Wassenaar demands a helicopter and a pizza.

7:14 a.m. Corrections Director Dora Schriro is contacted out of state and returns to Arizona.

7:18 a.m. TSU snipers are positioned on buildings surrounding the tower.

7:26 a.m. Command center is established at Department of Corrections headquarters.

7:45 a.m. DPS SWAT team and negotiators are on site at Lewis Complex.

8:05 a.m. DPS negotiator makes first, 7-minute phone contact with Wassenaar.

8:20 a.m. Wassenaar demands handcuff keys, and repeats demand for a helicopter, and to talk to Warden Gaspar and the Governor.

8:20-11:20 Negotiators have various conversations with Wassenaar, in which he backs off of his demand for a helicopter, demands a radio, describes injuries of the corrections officers held, and allows officers to speak briefly to one hostage.

11:19 a.m. Negotiators on the phone with Wassenaar play a tape-recorded message from his sister, pleading for him to end the situation peacefully.

11:30 a.m. Director Schriro, having flown back to Arizona, arrives at command center.

11:38 a.m. Negotiators share with Wassenaar the plan to deliver a handcuff key, in exchange for bullets.

12:36 p.m. Wassenaar demands to talk to a television news crew.

12:30-5:30 Various phone conversations occur between negotiators and Wassenaar.

5:25 p.m. DPS robot delivers AM/FM radio to inmates.

Evening - Negotiations continue on conditions for delivering a key to the inmates.

Monday, January 19

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue on and off throughout the day.

2:40 a.m. DPS robot delivers one pack of Camel unfiltered cigarettes.

6:52 a.m. DPS robot delivers one radio battery for two-way radio already in the tower, one handcuff key, a radio charger, and cookies.

7:52 a.m. Inmates return handcuff key along with three shotgun shells and #23 rubber ball rounds (non-lethal).

1:08 p.m. DPS robot delivers 1 pack of Camel filtered cigarettes, a hygiene packet (toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, a comb and a dental pick), four bottles of water and four styro cups.

1:18 p.m. Inmates turn in one round of 37mm wooden non-lethal projectiles (designed to be fired at the ground and hit the object at knee-level).

3:00 p.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

Tuesday, January 20

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

12:30 p.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

1:22 p.m. DPS robot delivers one handcuff key, bottled water, two bars of soap, one pack of coffee and seven individual cigarettes.

1:38 p.m. In return for delivery, inmates allow negotiators to get a visual confirmation of corrections officers being held.

9:51 a.m. DPS robot delivers four large cheeseburgers, two small cheeseburgers, four large orders of fries, four sodas, two packs of cigarettes and one package of coffee.

In return, inmates turn in numerous types of prescription drugs, two hand-made shanks, one canister of Mace and one cartridge for a 37 mm gun.

11:00 p.m. A health and welfare check is conducted with hostages via two-way radio.

Wednesday, January 21

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

8:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

12:20 a.m. DPS robot delivers a package of 8 Tylenol and three small cups in a plastic bag.

In return, inmates return two Mac 9 pepper spray gas canisters.

12:22 p.m. Inmates fire .37mm pepper spray gas into the yard after discovering that a nearby fence had been cut.

7:29 p.m. Negotiators receive voice confirmation of alertness of both hostages.

Thursday, January 22

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

9:30 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

10:29 a.m. Wassenaar asks to speak to a television reporter, answering questions the reporter would fax to him.

12:15 p.m. Negotiators give inmates interstate compact letters from other states to review.

3:20 p.m. Both corrections officers appears briefly on the roof, allowing for a visual welfare inspection.

9:30 p.m. Governor and key staff receive another briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

Friday, January 23

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

9:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

9:25 a.m. Inmates bring into the tower from outside water jugs that were there before the incident.

4:50 p.m. Wassenaar demands to speak to a reporter on live radio.

8:45 p.m. Negotiators discuss with Wassenaar terms of releasing one corrections officer.

Saturday, January 24

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

10:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

3:15 p.m. DPS robot delivers a package of five boxes of roast beef, five bags of dried beans, five summer sausages, five packages of tortillas, three tubes of Pringles potato chips, 18 Pepsis, 20 packs of jalapeño cheese, four packages of tuna, 10 packs of mayonnaise, and 10 candy bars. This represents half of the food the inmates requested. The other half would be delivered after the safe release of an officer.

3:20 p.m. Inmates release one corrections officer.

3:38 p.m. SWAT team members deliver second half of the food request: six cheeseburgers, six large orders of french fries, two large pizzas, 14 packs of cigarettes, and two packs of white cheese.

7:15 p.m. Negotiators hear remaining correctional officer voice during a conversation with Coy, confirming her alertness.

Sunday, January 25

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

Family members of one inmate arrive in Arizona to serve as third-party intermediaries..

10:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.


Monday, January 26

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

10:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

Tuesday, January 27

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

10:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

5:05 p.m. SWAT team members deliver three towels, three blankets, and three wash cloths.

5:10 p.m. In return for the delivery of towels and blankets, inmates make the remaining hostage visible to negotiators for a welfare check by having her appear on the observation deck.

5:32 p.m. Wassenaar asks to be interviewed on radio as a term of his release, as confirmation that the state will make good on the terms.

Wednesday, January 28

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue on and off throughout the day.

Family members of the other inmate arrive in Arizona to assist in negotiations.

9:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

12:28 p.m. SWAT team members deliver hygiene products for inmates and the corrections officer in return for a health and welfare check of the officer.

2:21 p.m. Negotiators hear corrections officer in the background of a phone call with Wassenaar, confirming her alertness.

Thursday, January 29

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

9:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

3:40 p.m. SWAT team members deliver three cinnamon rolls, one six-pack of tortillas and two packs of cigarettes, in return for a health and welfare check of the corrections officer conducted by a paramedic.

10:00 p.m. Governor and key staff meet with Director Schriro and key corrections staff address progress on negotiations, including a demand by Wassenaar to be interviewed on radio.

Friday, January 30

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

10:00 a.m. Governor and key staff receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

3:36 p.m. SWAT team members deliver three cinnamon rolls, one bottle of Pedialite, one bottle of Gatorade and one pack of cigarettes, in return for a health and welfare check of the corrections officer.

7:16 p.m. The corrections officer is interviewed by a physician for a health and welfare check.

Saturday, January 31

Negotiations via phone and/or radio continue throughout the day.

10:00 a.m. Key staff to the Governor receive daily briefing at the command center from Director Schriro and key Corrections staff and interagency personnel.

3:56 p.m. SWAT team members deliver a half an onion, part of a loaf of bread, two bottles of Gatorade and one bottle of diluted Gatorade for the correctional officer.

5:22 p.m. Wassenaar appears on the observation deck holding a shotgun backwards in his right hand.

7:17 p.m. The corrections officer is interviewed via phone by a physician for a health and welfare update.

8:08 p.m. SWAT team members deliver four pouches of tuna, one jar of Pedialite, and one pack of cigarettes.

Sunday, February 1

9:20 a.m. Third Party Intermediary (TPI) on phone.

10:04 a.m. Wassenaar identifies negotiator he wants to deal with; begin identifying surrender demands. Cigarettes & property in van; additional demands once negotiator on site.
10:14 a.m. Audio of officer saying she “is fine”.

11:04 a.m. Delivery of 4 packs of cigarettes.

11:29 a.m. Recap demands
Power on (to access lower floor for bathroom access)
Talk to sister (Wassenaar)
Play tape of inmate's ex-wife (Coy)
Property in van
Paperwork confirming no ADC or county custody for future court proceedings
Clothing
Steak, beer, pizza

11:52 a.m. Governor arrives at Central Office Command.

12:35 p.m. Tape of Coy's ex-wife played.

12:51 p.m. Correctional officer observed on roof with Wassenaar. She does not leave hatch area.

1:26 p.m. Call with Wassenaar's sister.

2:04 p.m. Wassenaar calls. If no power, no contact and additional demands in 24-hours. Then if no power & additional demands not met, no contact for 48 hours & additional demands.

2:39 p.m. Power switched on.

2:46 p.m. Wassenaar fires 37 mm multiple baton rounds (non-lethal).

2:57 p.m. Wassenaar reports no power.

3:13 p.m. Clothing & copies of revised paperwork delivered. Wassenaar comments he may have disabled power in tower. Food includes 3 steaks, 3 baked potatoes, 2 12 oz. cans of beer, 3 sodas. Clothing includes 2 inmate uniforms consisting of shirts, pants, underwear, socks and shoes.

3:39 p.m. Director briefs Governor on status.

3:41 p.m. Key delivered to allow inmates to access first floor to use bathroom and to clear obstacles & traps to facilitate opening of door and exit of the inmates and hostage.

3:47 p.m. Key inoperable.

4:18 p.m. 2nd key delivered.

4:23 p.m. Bureau of Prisons & TPI staged on perimeter.

4:25 p.m. Coy at hatch with binoculars.

4:39 p.m. Governor calls for update.

5:16 p.m. Contact initiated to talk surrender process specifics; Coy advises to call back.

5:19 p.m. Governor returns to Central Office Command Center.

5:31 p.m. Contact initiated to talk surrender process specifics; Coy advises to call back.

5:45 p.m. Contact initiated to talk surrender process specifics; Coy advises to call back.

5:52 p.m. Wassenaar calls. Discussions about specific steps to exit tower.

6:17 p.m. Wassenaar on roof in orange uniform, signifying door clear for opening by tactical team.

6:20 p.m. Tactical team approaches tower, opens door, props door open with sandbag. Team retreats approximately 10 yards.

6:25 p.m. Wassenaar comes out with his hands up. He complies with the order to turn around and lay on the ground and is restrained. Correctional Officer exits the tower next and is recovered by a tactical team, and removed to the Administration Building and awaiting ambulance. Coy exits the tower and is taken into custody and restrained.

6:32 p.m. Correctional officer is examined and treated in ambulance.

6:48 p.m. Helicopter departs complex with Correctional Officer.

6:51 p.m. Governor & Director depart for hospital.

7:08 p.m. Helicopter arrives at hospital with Correctional Officer.

7:34 p.m. Inmates depart with Bureau of Prisons.

 


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