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MCTC housing unit locked down twice after fights

August 31, 2005|by PEPPER BALLARD

pepperb@herald-mail.com

A housing unit at Maryland Correctional Training Center was locked down twice since Friday after two separate fights between inmates erupted after mealtimes, a prison official said Tuesday.

Maryland Division of Correction Spokesman George Gregory said MCTC inmates in Housing Unit 7 were returning from their evening meal Friday when a fight broke out between two inmates. After they were ordered twice by correctional officers to stop fighting, they were pepper sprayed and stopped, Gregory said.

A homemade weapon made from metal and wrapped in cloth was recovered, Gregory said. Both inmates were treated by prison nurses and placed in segregation. No correctional officers were injured in the assault, Gregory said.

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"Inmates are not routinely searched before going to meals," Gregory said.

After the fight, the housing unit which holds 349 inmates was put on lockdown until Sunday morning, Gregory said, so that correctional officers could search for weapons.

There are nine housing units at MCTC.

Another altercation Sunday night occurred after mealtime between two inmates in that same housing unit. The inmates were ordered to stop and complied, Gregory said. No correctional officers were injured, Gregory said.

He said a homemade weapon, also made from metal and wrapped in cloth, was used in that fight.

The names of those involved in the incidents were not released because the assaults were under investigation, Gregory said.

The housing unit was put on lockdown again after the Sunday evening fight and resumed normal operations Tuesday morning, Gregory said.

Gregory said he could not disclose how many correctional officers were working when either of the fights broke out "because it would be a breach of security."

"All posts were covered and staffing was not an issue," he said.

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