Contact: Alexandra Palombo
VICTORVILLE, CA - Three correctional workers at FCC Victorville in Victorville, CA were seriously assaulted by an inmate this week. All three were sent to local hospitals for treatment. The American Federation of Government Employees' (AFGE) Council of Prison Locals (CPL) is renewing its call for staff to utilize the protective equipment, including stab-proof vests, at all federal prison facilities.
"Correctional officers work day in and day out in our nation's prisons so that their communities may know peace," said Eric Young, President of AFGE's Council of Prison Locals. "These stabbings are a gruesome reminder to the public of the clear and present danger our correctional workers face on the clock. I thank God that all three are doing well, and I hope that both labor and management can rally together and provide our officers with the additional resources they need to stop this type of violence in our facilities."
The three officers injured – a Warden, a Captain, and a Special Investigative Supervisor Lieutenant – were assaulted by an inmate with an improvised weapon. The Warden suffered the most extensive injuries, receiving more than 80 staples on his torso. All three officers received treatment at local hospitals and are recovering. The inmate, who was recently convicted of providing material support to terrorists, was separated from other inmates for safety reasons and will be moved to a higher security prison.
Young said these stabbings are a reminder to the public of the dangerous work that correctional professionals take on every day. The CPL has worked closely with BOP to improve safety measures inside of federal prisons following the deaths of correctional officers Jose Rivera and Eric Williams. Both officers were unarmed and working without vests when they were murdered with improvised weapons by the inmates they supervised.
"In the last year, the CPL has worked diligently with the BOP to require all correctional workers working in high security prisons to wear these stab-proof vests, and to provide the option for all correctional workers in lower security prisons to request vests, if they desire," Young says. "With more safety measures like this in place, we hope that we can prevent these assaults from happening in the future."