Disgraced Lostprophets vocalist Ian Watkins was rushed to the hospital yesterday (Aug. 5) after being beaten and stabbed at HMP Wakefield (a.k.a. “Monster Mansion”), numerous sources confirmed. The singer – who received a 35-year sentence for child sex crimes in 2013 and whose charges prompted the group’s disbandment – was reportedly held captive by other inmates prior to the attack.
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According to U.K. outlet the Mirror, Watkins was “taken hostage by three other inmates shortly after 9am on Saturday morning. He is said to have suffered stab wounds and beatings before eventually being freed by prison officers around six hours later.” One source told the publication that he is “in a life-threatening condition and there are fears he could die. If he survives, he’ll have been very lucky.”
“Witnesses said paramedics worked to save his life in an ambulance outside the jail. A Prison Service spokesperson said: ‘Police are investigating an incident which took place on Saturday at HMP Wakefield. We are unable to comment further while the police investigate,’” The Mirror continued.
Per The Sun, the “siege” ended when a “’Tornado’ team of specially-trained riot officers hurled stun grenades into the cell to free Watkins from his captors. . . . One source said [he] had been knifed in the neck and had been taken for life-saving treatment at Leeds General Infirmary.”
Another source described the perpetrators as “three pretty heavy-duty cons” who “got hold of [Watkins] on B-wing and dragged him into a cell where they roughed him up and barricaded themselves in.”
The source continued [per The Sun]:
[Watkins] was screaming and was obviously terrified and in fear of his life. They put the whole wing on lockdown and then sent in riot teams. Other prisoners heard three loud flash bangs which was when the officers got into the cell and threw grenades to stun the attackers and take them by surprise. It seems like the prison officers might have saved his life. Watkins is obviously unpopular because of who he is – and has been walking around with a huge target on his back. They got him on a Saturday, which is generally quieter with less staff on and it seems to have been planned.
The newspaper also noted that “the hostage-takers . . . have been arrested.”
As of now, no updates have been given regarding Watkins’ condition.
There is certainly evidence to assume that Watkins had “a huge target on his back.” For instance, back in 2019, Loudwire reported on Watkins being “charged with possessing a mobile phone that he was not supposed to have” while in prison. At the time, the Mirror described, Watkins told a jury that he was instructed to hold onto the phone by “known murderers.”
“I didn’t want to mess with them,” Watkins added, “[because] I like my head on my body. . . . Chances are someone would sneak up behind me [if he disobeyed them] and cut my throat. . . . Compared to the prison population, I’m not anonymous . . . everyone has an opinion on me, which is fair enough, and I have to deal with that every day.”
Following Lostprophets’ disbandment in October of 2013, several ex-members teamed up with Thursday vocalist Geoff Rickly to form post-punk/alternative rock band No Devotion. Since 2014, they’ve released two studio LPs: 2015’s Permanence and 2022’s No Oblivion.
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