A state prison inmate who was stabbing another prisoner had his right thumb shot off by a guard.
Charles Bolls, a spokesman for High Desert State Prison near Susanville, said 26-year-old Diego Pimintel was stabbing another inmate in an exercise yard Monday with a prison-made weapon.
A tower guard with a rifle fired a single shot to end the assault, severing Pimintel's thumb.
Pimintel was sent to a Susanville hospital; officials searched for a specialist who could try reattaching the thumb. He is serving a 14-year sentence for second-degree murder. Bolls said the victim was stabbed 30 times and was being treated in a Reno hospital, but he said he did not know the man's condition.
Another inmate who held the victim from behind is in custody as authorities investigate the stabbing, which involved three members of the same San Bernardino County gang.