Prison guard dies of injuries in alleged attack over towel

A Pennsylvania prison guard who confiscated a towel blocking a view of an inmate’s bunk and was attacked has died of his injuries.

State officials say Sgt. Mark Baserman died Monday.

Authorities say the 61-year-old guard was punched repeatedly and kicked in the head Feb. 15 by inmate Paul Jawon Kendrick at the state prison in Somerset, southeast of Pittsburgh.

He’s the first state correctional officer to be killed by a prisoner in nearly 40 years.

A state police affidavit says the attack began with the 22-year-old Kendrick striking Baserman in the face, and then punching him in the head about 10 times and kicking him in the head, leaving Baserman unresponsive.

Kendrick was arraigned Monday on assault charges filed last week. He doesn’t have a defense lawyer on file.

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