FLORENCE, Ariz. — In what may have been a botched escape attempt, a woman married to a death-row inmate opened fire through a prison fence Wednesday as her husband worked in a vegetable garden.
In the hail of gunfire, the inmate was killed and guards fatally shot the woman.
It was not immediately known whether Floyd Bennett Thornton Jr., 36, was killed by shots fired by his wife or guards. Officials had initially said Thornton was killed by his wife, Rebecca Lynn Thornton, 38.
"We are looking at this as a possible escape attempt," said Camilla Strongin, spokeswoman for the state Corrections Department.
Rebecca Thornton lived across the street from the prison and had married Thornton in January while he was on death row, officials said.
Shortly before 8 a.m., Rebecca Thornton pulled up to the prison's chain-link fence, opened a door and began firing a rifle, Strongin said. She then switched to a handgun and walked closer to the fence.