More officers injured in attacks

Mark Gutman/Daily News Albion Correctional Facility

ALBION — Two more corrections officers were injured in inmate attacks that came just two weeks after 13 officers were injured in separate attacks at Orleans Correctional Facility.

And last week, two officers were injured at Albion Correctional, a women’s prison, after being attacked by an inmate, said officials from the state Corrections Officers and Police Benevolent Association.

Western Region Vice President Kenny Gold said the first attack happened April 28 at Orleans.

An officer saw two inmates in a bathroom stall at the facility. He ordered both inmates out of the stall and they initially complied.

While leaving the bathroom, one of the inmates turned toward the officer and punched him multiple times in the head and upper body. The officer immediately called for a response as the inmate continued to attack him.

The officer grabbed the inmate in a body hold, but with one arm still free, the inmate continued to strike the officer in the head. The officer forced the inmate to the floor, where he remained combative.

OC spray was administered with no effect.

Two officers arrived to assist and were able to get the inmate’s arms behind his back, where handcuffs were applied.

Once in handcuffs, the inmate became compliant. He was placed in a Special Housing Unit pending disciplinary charges.

The inmate was described as serving a 15 year sentence after being convicted in Queens County in 2016 for first-degree burglary and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. During the course of the burglary, he struck a police officer, who responded to the burglary in progress call, in the head with a crowbar.

The corrections officer attacked suffered multiple scrapes to his neck, back, face and arms; pain and swelling to his shoulder and knee; and a contusion to the back of his head. He was treated by medical staff at the facility and transported to an outside hospital for further treatment.

Gold said he has yet to return to work.

On Sunday, May 1, at Orleans an officer was assaulted by an inmate after he removed the inmate’s handcuffs inside a program classroom. The inmate struck the officer in the head with such force it knocked the officer into the classroom wall.

Four officers immediately responded to the attack and grabbed the inmate in body holds to contain him. A sergeant administered OC spray to the inmate, which proved effective.

Once the inmate was compliant, handcuffs were applied and he was removed from the classroom.

The inmate, 25, was subsequently transferred to Auburn Correctional Facility after the incident. He is serving a seven-year sentence after being convicted in Queens County for second-degree robbery and first-degree attempted robbery.

The injured officer was treated at the facility for pain and swelling to his cheekbone and jaw. He was transported to Medina Memorial Hospital for additional treatment and has not returned to work.

Two officers at Albion were injured May 4 when a female inmate attacked one of the officers with a broom in the facility gymnasium.

The inmate was creating a disturbance in the gymnasium. The officer assigned to the gym approached the inmate and ordered her to stop.

The inmate grabbed a broom and struck the officer in the shoulder. The officer immediately grabbed the inmate in a body hold and forced her to the ground.

While the inmate was on the ground and still combative, the officer, with the assistance of a second officer, was able to apply handcuffs as the inmate continued to fight and attempted to kick them.

The inmate was brought to her feet, where she remained combative. The two officers removed the inmate from the gymnasium and placed her in a Special Housing Unit pending disciplinary charges.

The two injured officers were treated by facility medical staff and did not return to duty.

The attacks came weeks after 13 officers were injured in attacks at Orleans, prompting more calls for reform, including repealing HALT legislation that went into effect April 1. The legislation limits solitary confinement and other disciplinary measures against violent inmates.

“NYSCOPBA is renewing its call for State Legislators to repeal the HALT Act amid a drastic rise in attacks on staff by inmates,” Gold said. “Instead of coddling convicted felons, legislators should be supporting our members who are being slashed, hit with brooms and violently attacked daily. What will it take for legislators to act? Does a staff member have to die before they wake up and realize this legislation was a catastrophe from the start?

“HALT needs to be repealed immediately, not tomorrow, next month or next year.”

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