Report on Riot Cause Due Within Two Weeks

by scrosby on October 28, 2009

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

A final report is expected within two weeks from a Critical Incident Review Team assessing possible causes of the August riot at Northpoint Training Facility near Danville. The riot left six buildings at the medium-security Kentucky prison destroyed by fire and several staff and inmates with minor injuries. There were no escapes.

Meals from a private vendor have been cited as a possible cause, but Corrections Commissioner LaDonna Thompson says she won’t know until she sees the report.

“They’ve spoken with the inmates. They’ve spoken with the staff. They’ve gone through documents that existed pre-riot. And those are the things they’re putting together for me so we can find out is it beyond that,” says Thompson. “I’ve heard the rumor as you have, but there are several other issues that are being bandied about at the same time. So, until I get the report, I wouldn’t want to step out there and say.”

Sen. John Schickel of Union says his experience in law enforcement tells him otherwise.

“In my experience of jail and prison disturbances, those causes really boil down to one thing and that’s a breakdown in inmate discipline,” says Schickel.

The state began outsourcing food at the prison in 2005. Other possible causes of the riot include gang violence and prison yard restrictions. More than 100 inmates face disciplinary action in connection with the riot.

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