NEW BOSTON, TX (KSLA) - The Texas Department of Corrections officer at the Telford Unit in New Boston that died as a result of injuries allegedly suffered at the hands of an inmate Wednesday morning has been identified by prison officials.
Telford Unit spokesman Jason Clark says it was Timothy Davison, 47, of Bowie County that was assaulted around 9 a.m. as he was bringing the inmate back to his cell.
Clark says the inmate managed to get control of an iron bar used to open the slots in cell doors used to deliver meals to prisoners and use it to assault the officer.
Davison was taken by medical helicopter to CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System in Texarkana, where he died from his injuries.
"Our hearts are deeply saddened by this tragic loss of life. This dedicated correctional officer came to work each day determined to make Texas a safer place to live. I would ask the public to please keep the officer's family and the entire TDCJ family in your prayers during this difficult time," said Brad Livingston, Executive Director of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family, friends, and co-workers of the correctional officer killed this morning. It is times like these that we fully understand the dangers that our officers face each day while on the job," said Oliver Bell, Chairman of the Texas Board of Criminal Justice. "We will see that the offender who is responsible for this murder will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."Governor Greg Abbott also issued a statement Wednesday afternoon following Davison's death:
"The State of Texas mourns for the family of Officer Timothy Davison, who was murdered by an inmate at the Telford Unit in New Boston, Texas. On behalf of the entire state, Cecilia and I extend our deepest condolences to the Davison family during this incredibly difficult time. Officer Davison was a public servant in the truest sense of the phrase, but more importantly, he was a parent to two children who will remain in our thoughts and prayers as they grieve the loss of their father. The State of Texas will ensure that the inmate responsible for this heinous act is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
Clark says this is the first time something like this has happened in the 20-year history of the Barry Telford Unit.
The offender has been identified as 37-year-old Billy Joel Tracy, who had been incarcerated at Telford since 1998.
He is serving a life sentence for aggravated assault and burglary of a habitation. He was also convicted of assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated assault with serious bodily injury on a public servant, and possession of a deadly weapon in a penal institution and is serving 45 years for those offenses.
The Texas Office of Inspector General has been notified of the incident and an investigation is under way.
Officer Davison began working at the Barry Telford Unit in New Boston last December.
His body has been sent to Dallas for an autopsy.