TBI identifies man killed in inmate-on-inmate altercation at Trousdale Turner prison


The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is investigating the death of an inmate at Trousdale Turner Correctional Facility in Hartsville on Saturday afternoon.

According to a spokeswoman for CoreCivic, the company who owns and operates the prison, 42-year-old Ernest Hill was killed during an inmate-on-inmate incident inside a cell around 3 p.m. on Saturday. 

The official said a corrections officer found the man unconscious on the floor of his cell while conducting a formal count and immediately called for unit staff to conduct “life-saving measures until medical staff arrived.” 

EMTs transported the man to a medical facility outside the prison where he was pronounced dead approximately an hour later. 

According to TBI officials, investigators believe Hill died while in his prison cell but did not immediately release his cause of death. 

No corrections officers were involved or injured in the incident. 

CoreCivic spokeswoman Amanda Gilchrist sent the following statement to News 2 on Sunday morning: 

“Trousdale Turner Correctional Center remains on partial lockdown status Saturday evening following an inmate-on-inmate altercation that resulted in one inmate losing his life.

On Saturday, June 15 at approximately 3 pm CDT, while conducting formal count, an inmate was found unconscious on the floor of his cell.  A medical emergency was called and unit staff initiated life-saving measures until medical staff arrived. EMS was called to the facility and the inmate was transported to an outside hospital where he was pronounced deceased at 4 pm CDT.    

Our partners at the Tennessee Department of Correction were immediately notified and facility staff are cooperating fully with the investigation. The unit remains on lockdown status while the TDOC Office of Investigations and Compliance investigates the incident.”

In deference to our government parter, other inquiries regarding the investigation should be directed to the TDOC Communications Division.”

This is a developing story. Stay with News 2 for updates on-air and online.  

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