Judge eyes case guidelines in Delaware prison riot prosecution

Kelly Gibbs had pled guilty this week to riot, kidnapping and conspiracy charges in connection to the February 1-2, 2017 riot at Vaughn. (File/WHYY)

Kelly Gibbs had pled guilty this week to riot, kidnapping and conspiracy charges in connection to the February 1-2, 2017 riot at Vaughn. (File/WHYY)

A judge presiding over the prosecution of several inmates charged in a fatal prison uprising in Delaware has told attorneys he’d like to handle the defendants in groups of four.

Eighteen prisoners have been charged in the February riot. Sixteen, including some already serving time for murder, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of corrections officer Steven Floyd.

After meeting with attorneys last week, the judge directed prosecutors to provide a plan to group the defendants. Defense attorneys will have until March 30 to submit any concerns they might have.

The judge has scheduled another status conference for March 9.

Prosecutors previously told the judge that if lawmakers vote to reinstate Delaware’s death penalty, they reserve the right to try to apply it to the defendants.

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