Prisoners injured when van struck in LaOtto

Eight people in a van that was transporting prisoners were injured when it was struck and overturned Thursday afternoon in LaOtto. (Photo courtesy of the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department)

Two Department of Correction officers and six prisoners were injured, including one with a broken back, when the van they were in was struck Thursday in LaOtto.

At 2:54 p.m., a Columbia City woman driving a Ford F350 that had been southbound on Indiana 3 turned left at the intersection with Indiana 205 and drove into the path of the transport van, according to a DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department news release.

The private transport van, a Dodge Ram 3500 owned by U.S. Corrections, had been northbound on Indiana 3 and went off the road, struck a utility pole and landed in a ditch.

The prisoners were trapped in a caged area until firefighters could free them, according to the release. One prisoner, Luis Guzman Calderon, 28, of Cleveland, was flown to a Fort Wayne hospital with a broken back. The officer who was driving the van, Albert McDaniel, 46, of Florida, suffered a broken leg, and another officer, Luis Feliciano, 47, of Florida, suffered broken ribs and a broken clavicle. They and the rest of the prisoners, who were all from different states, were taken by EMS to a hospital for treatment and either released or listed in stable condition, according to the release.