Correctional Officer Merle E. Clutts

Correctional Officer Merle E. Clutts

United States Department of Justice - Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Government

End of Watch Saturday, October 22, 1983

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Merle E. Clutts

Correctional Officer Merle Clutts was killed when he was stabbed by an inmate with a homemade prison shank at USP Marion in Marion, Illinois.

The suspect, a former leader of the Aryan Brotherhood, was being escorted back to his cell after having a shower when another inmate slipped him a shank. The suspect then ran down the tier and attacked Correctional Officer Clutts whom he had a vendetta against. By the time the officers got the suspect off Correctional Officer Clutts and got him to safety, he had been stabbed 40 times. The suspect was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison where he died in May 2019.

Prior to Officer Clutts' murder the suspect had murdered three fellow inmates. One of the three shot and killed Officer Henry W. Jennings of the Hartford, Connecticut, Police Department on May 25, 1964.

Just eight hours later Correctional Officer Robert Hoffmann would be murdered in the same prison in an unrelated incident.

Correctional Officer Clutts had served with the Federal Bureau of Prisons for 19 years.


  • Age 51
  • Tour 19 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Stabbed
  • Location Illinois
  • Weapon Edged weapon; Shank
  • Offender Deceased

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Rest in peace always and know that your memory, service and sacrifice will never be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

October 30, 2020

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