The family of a slain Bertie Correctional officer is suing the inmate accused of killing her.
The lawsuit, filed last week by the father of Sgt. Meggan Callahan, said inmate Craig Wissink “negligently or recklessly or maliciously and intentionally attacked and murdered” Callahan.
Callahan died April 26. She was 29.
According to a prison disciplinary report, Wissink set a fire in a dormitory trash can and attacked Callahan when she tried to put out the blaze.
Authorities allege that Wissink threw hot water in her face and then beat her to death with a fire extinguisher that she’d brought to douse the flames.
Callahan died of “traumatic head injuries,” an autopsy report said.
Wissink, 36, is serving a life sentence for murder stemming from a 2000 robbery attempt in Fayetteville. He has also been charged with first-degree murder in Callahan’s death.
Callahan’s family is seeking more than $25,000 in damages.
A recent Charlotte Observer investigation found that only four of Callahan’s officers were working the day she died. That’s half the recommended number, several current and former officers said.
Experts told the Observer that better staffing might have saved Callahan’s life – as well as the lives of four other prison employees who were fatally wounded during a failed escape attempt at Pasquotank Correctional Institution on Oct. 12. Four inmates who worked in that prison’s sewing plant have been charged in those attacks.
Just one prison officer oversaw more than 30 inmates inside Pasquotank’s sewing plant when the violence erupted.