Sergeant Ruben Thomas Florida Department of Corrections, Florida End of Watch: Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sergeant Ruben Thomas | Florida Department of Corrections, FloridaFlorida Department of Corrections, Florida

Sergeant Ruben Thomas

Florida Department of Corrections, Florida
End of Watch: Sunday, March 18, 2012

Biographical Info

Age: 24
Tour of Duty: 6 years
Badge Number: Not available

Incident Details

Cause of Death: Stabbed
Date of Incident: March 18, 2012
Weapon Used: Edged weapon; Shank
Suspect Info: In custody

Agency Contact Information

Secretary of Corrections Kenneth Tucker
Florida Department of Corrections
501 South Calhoun Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Phone: (850) 488-5021

Sergeant Ruben Thomas was stabbed to death by an inmate at the Columbia Correctional Institution Annex.
At approximately 10:00 pm he was checking on an inmate in one of the prison’s dorms when the inmate attacked him. He was stabbed in the neck several times by the inmate who was armed with some sort shank. The inmate, who was serving a life sentence for murdering a college student, then struck another officer in the eye with a sock filled filled with a heavy item before being taken into custody.
Sergeant Thomas was transported to Shands Lake Shore Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds.
Sergeant Thomas had served with the Florida Department of Corrections for six years. He is survived by his young daughter and fiancee.


A 24-year-old corrections officer at Columbia Correctional Institution in Lake City was stabbed to death by an inmate on Sunday night, officials said Monday.

Sgt. Ruben Thomas died after he was stabbed at 10:24 p.m. while on duty, though it was not clear what weapon the inmate used, the Florida Department of Corrections said.

Another officer, William Brewer, was assaulted during the incident and was treated at a hospital and released. In a statement, the department said Brewer “will require further medical attention.”

According to the statement, witnesses said Thomas, who had been with the department for six years, was stabbed in the neck by Richard P. Franklin, who had been sentenced to life in prison in 1995 after he was convicted of first-degree murder and armed robbery in Volusia County.

Franklin, 37, had also been convicted of battery on a law enforcement officer, escape and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

Department spokesman Steve Arthur said Franklin had a history of violence and causing trouble at the various prisons he had been.

Franklin arrived at Columbia on Aug. 25, Arthur said.

“He’s just been what looks like a really difficult prisoner,” Arthur said.

He said it wasn’t immediately clear whether Franklin had been charged with Thomas’ death as of late Monday morning.

In a statement, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said her “deepest condolences go out to the family, friends and colleagues of Sgt. Ruben Thomas of the Florida Department of Corrections.”

“My prayers for a quick recovery are with Officer William Brewer, who was injured during the incident,” Bondi said. “Law enforcement officers take serious risks for the safety of others, and I am grateful to our law enforcement community for their selfless dedication to protecting Floridians.”


6 Responses to “Sergeant Ruben Thomas Florida Department of Corrections, Florida End of Watch: Sunday, March 18, 2012”

  1. 1 Patricia and George Kozlow March 19, 2012 at 20:37

    my heart was broken when Deputy Pill was gunned down,..!!..I couldn`t understand how an Officer with 30 years experience on the force allowed an animal to get the drop on her,..!!..???..I checked around,..various Police Officers, and was told that she was probably “complacent”,..????..the local papers said after she brought the car to a halt,..??..the perpertrator opened and closed the door a few times,..??..when he finally climbed out of the car,..??..he came out shooting,..??..!!..??..didn`t she have her weapon out and pointed,..??..!!…and cocked,..??…SORRY,..I remember an old one,..”shoot first and ask questions later”,…!!!!..SORRY,..!!..may she R. I. P…!!!!…

    • 2 Keith H. BPPD March 22, 2012 at 04:24

      Mr. and Mrs Kozlow,

      I understand you are angry and frustrated, but this memorial page is not an appropriate place to second guess any fallen Officer. I encourage you to remove your post.

  2. 3 Ronnie Walker March 22, 2012 at 08:00

    Is this what’s it going to take to take all of rights away from inmates that are living an easy life in prison, or more of us have to pass on. I hear all of the time that we are not allowed to be inhumane, now another one of us is gone,and everyone outside of the gate seems surprised. IT’S TIME TO MAKE PRISON A PRISON, and stop letting these people live free on the tax payers, with more rights than an innocent person who never broke the law in their life.

  3. 4 Roni March 23, 2012 at 11:28

    This saddens me because that could have been me or anyone I work with, I am also a C.O… My prayers go out to the Thomas family, friends and co workers. We must continue to “never walk alone”.

  4. 5 Brandy anderson March 23, 2012 at 12:16

    My family is driving home from vacation and witnessed the funeral procession for the fallen officer in Lake City, very moving. Our prayers are with your community and his family.

  5. 6 Jeremy Young March 24, 2012 at 20:59

    Rest in Peace Sgt Rubin Thomas we will carry on

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