Hostage released after two-hour standoff with inmate |

Hostage released after two-hour standoff with inmate

Associated Press

VACAVILLE, Calif. – A medical worker at the California Medical Facility in Vacaville taken hostage by an inmate for more than two hours Thursday was released unharmed, a spokeswoman from the Department of Corrections said.

The 37-year-old medical technical assistant was taken hostage in the print shop at around 12:30 p.m. by John Joseph Catanzarite, said information officer Margot Bach.

Catanzarite is serving a 50-year sentence at the Vacaville facility for numerous sex offenses, Bach said.

”He had threatened to pour gasoline on her and light her afire if any media found out about this. He also wanted to make three calls to the outside, but we’re not sure to whom,” Bach said.

Employee Viola Cisneros was released at 2:50 p.m., after officers with the Special Emergency Response Team broke down the door of the print shop and subdued Catanzarite, Bach said.

No injuries were reported, she said.

Catanzarite has been incarcerated at the facility for more than seven years, since his conviction in Alameda County on charges including rape and robbery, Bach said.