When a jailer suddenly slumped forward and lay motionless, a group of Texas inmates burst out of a holding cell. Still shackled, the inmates were able to make enough noise to summon help for the guard in distress.
"A jailer may very well be alive tonight thanks to the inmates he was guarding at the Parker County courts building," WFAA-TV reported.
The incident involving at least eight inmates was captured on surveillance video released by The Associated Press. You can see the ailing guard slumped in the corner of the video. After unsuccessfully calling for help, the men burst out of their holding room and found the guard had no pulse, as WFAA reported.
So, they made noise to alert the other deputies. "They thought it was a big old fight going on down there," one of the inmates involved told the channel.
Sgt. Ryan Speegle, noting that the guard in distress had keys and a gun, said, "It could have been an extremely bad situation." The confused deputies burst in to the area and corralled the inmates back into their cell. Paramedics performed CPR and the man regained a pulse as the inmates looked on, WFAA reported.
Nick Kelton, one of the inmates involved, described the guard as a "good man" in an interview with WFAA. "It never crossed my mind whether he's got a gun or a badge," Kelton said. "If he falls down, I'll help him."
According to the AP, the unnamed jailer "continues to recover from an apparent heart attack."