Eleven Days in Hell: The 1974 Carrasco Prison Siege at Huntsville, Texas

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The longest civilian hostage-taking siege in the history of the United States penal system took place in Texas' Huntsville State Prison in the summer of 1974. Federico Carrasco, a former drug boss, and two other inmates used smuggled guns to take eleven civilian prison workers hostage in the prison library. They planned to escape using the hostages as shields in a moving barricade, but W. J. Estelle, Jr., Director of the Texas Department of Corrections, had his team blast the barricade with water hoses. In a violent end to the standoff, Carrasco committed suicide, one of his two accomplices was killed (the other later executed), and two female hostages were murdered by their captors.