Commissioner Tom Roy of the State Department of Corrections in Minnesota sadly reports the death of Corrections Officer Joseph Parise.
Officer Parise, 37, suffered a cardiac medical emergency following his assistance of another officer who was assaulted by an inmate.
The incident occurred at the Oak Park Heights Correctional Facility. An inmate became disruptive and began punching one of the corrections officers. A call for assistance was made and several officers responded. Two of the responding corrections officers were also injured in the mayhem.
After the inmate was subdued and returned to his cell the officers returned to their assigned duty stations. A short time later Parise collapsed.
Officers rendered medical assistance and summoned an ambulance. Parise was transported to Regions Hospital in St. Paul for advanced cardiac medical treatment. However, his condition deteriorated and he died at the hospital.
At the time of his death, Parise was considering a transfer in his duty assignment to the Stillwater Facility where Corrections Officer Joseph Gomm was killed in July of this year. There is a shortage of corrections officers and he was willing to help with the staffing at that location.
“He’s always fun, charismatic, positive,” said Corrections Officer Derek Magle, the vice president of AFSCME Local 915 at Oak Park Heights in a statement. “He always worried about other staff before he worried about himself. When you were having issues, he would reach out to try to help.”
“We offer our heartfelt condolences to Officer Parise’s family, friends, and all of his fellow officers,” said a statement in part from the Department of Corrections. “This is a very difficult day for our Oak Park Heights officers and employees, and our entire department. We are deeply saddened by today’s events. Support services will be available for Oak Park Heights employees, and all corrections officers and staff.”
Corrections Officer Joseph Parise served the Minnesota Department of Corrections for four years.
He was also a veteran of the United States Navy veteran.
Governor Mark Dayton released the following statement:
“Officer Joseph Parise was a dedicated state employee, who worked hard every day to protect the safety of his colleagues and our communities. We are deeply saddened by Officer Parise’s sudden and tragic death. On behalf of all Minnesotans, I offer my heartfelt sympathies to his family, friends, and fellow Corrections Officers.”
Guy Wicklander, a retired Stillwater corrections officer, said the attacks were putting more and more pressure on officers.
“Just in a normal situation it’s a stressful job,” said Wicklander, who was nearly killed during a 1999 inmate attack at Oak Park Heights. “But especially right now.”
Parise is survived by his expectant wife and two small children.
Corrections Officer Joseph Parise is gone, but will never be forgotten.
EOW: Monday, September 24, 2018