Every now and again there is a story that has so many angles to it that it can’t be adequately covered in a single post. I want to start by stating how thankful I am that correction officer Spalding survived his encounter and wish him all the best as he pursues justice in his termination. He and many others go to work every day in conditions that most of us can barely comprehend, and protect us from those who are human in only the biological sense.
Kim Spalding, a career law enforcement and corrections officer, was alone, supervising 64 prisoners in Alaska’s only maximum security prison. He was attacked by three inmates from a prison gang whom he had disciplined in the past. It was in the course of this beating, and fearing for his life, CO Spalding deployed a pocketknife he had smuggled into the housing unit.
In a nutshell, Spalding successfully fought off his attackers, but lost his job 2 days short of 20 years – when he would be eligible for his complete pension.
There are so many angles from which to approach this story. TTAK’s own Managing Editor Chris Dumm, is a criminal defense attorney in Washington state. Multiple times a month, he travels “behind the wire”, and has a unique perspective from which to analyze this story. We look forward to his insights in future posts.
Some of the issues we will be tackling in the coming days apply both to the specifics of this of this DKU, as well as to Defensive Knife Use in general, 2nd Amendment and knife rights, and the folly of civilian disarmament when this cannot be achieved even within the walls of a maximum security prison.
In the mean time, read this article from the Anchorage Daily News: Former prison guard describes fending off attack with knife.