Videos indicate Alabama murderer may have overpowered guard in failed escape attempt

Published 8:54 am Monday, August 14, 2023

A convicted Alabama killer appeared on live social media video apparently wearing a guard’s vest and perhaps holding a gun, hours before state corrections officials said he was involved in a “security incident.”

Exactly what happed still isn’t clear.

What is clear that Derrol Shaw, 35, appeared in live social media videos early Sunday morning in which he appeared to be wearing a prison officer’s vest and smoking something he claimed was marijuana.

Shaw is serving life without parole for killing four people in Birmingham in 2006. In the videos Shaw can be seen with what appeared to be a bandage, covered in blood, around his wrist.

He claimed he was cut on the razor wire surrounding the Donaldson Correctional Facility.

Shaw seems to indicate he was trying to escape, but then returned to the prison after being injured out of fear that he might bleed so much he would die.

Shaw says in the video that he didn’t intend to do harm to anyone else, but seemed to suggest he took a gun as “insurance we didn’t have to get physical.”

Further, Shaw suggested the conditions inside the Donaldson Correctional Facility were “absolute chaos every single day.”

Corrections officials would not confirm Sunday exactly what happened in the incident or how Shaw apparently obtained a guard’s vest and a gun. They simply said the matter was under investigation and that no officers were injured.

The prison, located in Bessemer, Alabama, was still on lockdown Sunday.

Alabama’s state prisons have been under scrutiny for years. The U.S. Department of Justice sued Alabama in 2020 over the conditions of the state’s prisons. That lawsuit is expected to go to trial next year.