Corrections Officer Rhonda Jean Russell

Corrections Officer Rhonda Jean Russell

Blair County Prison, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Add to My Heroes

Rhonda Jean Russell

Corrections Officer Rhonda Russell was shot and killed after a struggle for her firearm at the holding area of the Central Court building at 615 Fourth Street in Altoona.

A male inmate attacked and disarmed Officer Russell while waiting for a court hearing. An Altoona police officer who was in the court building saw the altercation between Officer Russell and the suspect. The suspect had restrained Officer Russell and aimed the weapon at the officer. The officer shot at the suspect, but the suspect moved Officer Russell into the line of fire. She was transported to UPMC Altoona, where she succumbed to her wounds.

The inmate who attacked Officer Russell was charged with murder of the second degree and murder of a law enforcement officer of the second degree.

Officer Russell had served 16 years with the Blair County Prison. She is survived by her three sons, fiancé, and parents.


  • Age 47
  • Tour 16 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire (Inadvertent)
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender In custody

crossfire, escape attempt, prisoner custody


You must have an ODMP account to view agency contact information.

Click here to log in or create a free account.

Most Recent Reflection

View all 131 Reflections

Thank you for your service, Corrections Officer Rhonda Jean Russell. This is truly sad to hear of such a tragic accident. Thank you again. My prayers are lifted for your family, friends and the Department. My prayers are also lifted on behalf of the Officer who tried to save your life. May God Bless and rest you in his peace; and, may God comfort the Officer involved as well. Praying for you.

God Bless,

Kim Durham
Christina Giannone - Police Officer City of Davis

December 8, 2021

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.