Disturbance at Vandalia Prison

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Published on August 21 2014 10:45 am
Written by Greg Sapp

Illinois Department of Corrections officials are taking action in the wake of a disturbance at Vandalia Correctional Center Wednesday night.

The incident appears to have been prompted by a power failure. Tom Shaer of IDOC said power went out in Vandalia and the surrounding area, including the prison, at about 10:30pm. Service was restored at 11:52pm.

Shaer said when the outage occurred, some of the backup lights in the housing areas failed to come on, a matter he said will be looked into by IDOC. During the outage, approximately 20 inmates in two dorm units became rowdy, yelling and banging objects, but were housed inside their dorms. A liquid believed to be milk was thrown among inmates and at staff members. As officers worked to quell the situation, Shaer said one inmate who was being removed from a dorm room struck a Lieutenant one time and tackled him. The officer sustained a bruise and scratch to his facial area as well as a cut. Shaer said there was no other physical violence. 

The inmate who struck the officer is being investigated and is being transferred to maximum security segregation. IDOC might pursue criminal prosecution against the inmate for assaulting a peace officer in a prison. Other inmates who were rowdy have also been identified and are being appropriately transferred.