Twenty-four teen-aged inmates of the Adolescent Reception and Detention Center on Rikers Island commandeered a prison van in an unsuccessful escape attempt from the island last night. Several guards were injured, including the van’s driver, who was taken to the hospital in serious condition.
A Correction Dept. spokesman said that the prisoners had overpowered the driver, attacked another guard and tried to speed across the narrow causeway linking the prison with the Queens mainland. The driver was “garroted” from behind by an inmate while the van was taking the inmates from a visitor’s area at the main building to separate quarters elsewhere on the island.
Excerpt from The New York Times 11/11/77