Inmate Found Guilty of Assault in a Detention Facility in Smyrna - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Inmate Found Guilty of Assault in a Detention Facility in Smyrna

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The James T. Vaughn Correctional Center near Smyrna, Del. (Photo: WBOC) The James T. Vaughn Correctional Center near Smyrna, Del. (Photo: WBOC)

DOVER, Del.- An inmate at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna was found guilty of assault in a detention facility July 20.

Benjamin Panella received the minimum mandatory two-year sentence. Additionally, his good time credit was revoked, according to the State of Delaware Department of Correction.

Panella was serving a 25-year sentence for first degree robbery, possession of a deadly weapon during the commission of a felony and second degree murder when he assaulted a correctional officer by throwing a cup of hot liquid on him back in January 2017, the Department of Correction said.

According to the Department of Correction, responding officers noticed that in addition to the hot liquid, Panella had a two-foot long handmade weapon with two razor blades attached.

After displaying his weapon out of the food flap, officers sprayed him with OC spray. Panella was handcuffed and taken from his cell without incident, the Department of Correction said.

“Correctional officers have a dangerous job often overlooked by the public,” Commissioner Perry Phelps said in a statement. “Their bravery is what allows us to run safe and secure facilities for staff, visitors and inmates.”

Panella received a multitude of institutional charges as a result of the incident.

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