Correctional Officer Cecil H. Harbison

Correctional Officer Cecil H. Harbison

Illinois Department of Corrections, Illinois

End of Watch Friday, November 30, 1984

Cecil H. Harbison

Correctional Officer Cecil Harbison was stabbed to death at the Menard Correctional Center.

A convicted murderer, who had been indecisive about going to the recreation yard, was left locked in his cell by Correctional Officer Harbison until the other inmates returned later that morning. When Correctional Officer Harbison turned the crank to permit the other inmates back into their cells, the suspect charged him, stabbing him a dozen times with a shank.

The inmate was convicted of murder and sentenced to death, but later committed suicide in his cell.

Correctional Officer Harbison had served with the Illinois Department of Corrections for only six months and would have become certified within a few weeks. He was survived by his wife and daughter.


  • Age 30
  • Tour 6 months
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Stabbed
  • Weapon Edged weapon; Shank
  • Offender Committed suicide

Most Recent Reflection

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I went to high school with Cecil. We were pretty close. When I got out of the Marines in 1975 I recall talking to him at the bottom
of that long driveway they had in Fairview Hghts. He said he wanted to be a Correctional Officer. I also became a Correctional Officer for the Menard Psychiatric Division from 1978 to 1980. A few years later I heard the horrible new about my old friend. My heart sank. I could not believe it. My heart felt belated condolences to the Family he leaves behind.

Bruce Burton

January 8, 2016

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