Arizona Prison Officials Reassigned After Scathing Evaluation


The warden and eight other supervisors of a prison where two officers were held hostage by inmates have been reassigned after a panel concluded that conditions were so bad and security so lax that a crisis was inevitable.

A panel appointed by the governor to review what led up to the longest prison hostage standoff in U.S. history concluded Thursday that problems at the Arizona State Prison Complex-Lewis had continued unchecked for years, reports the Arizona Republic.

“It is going to be a monumental task to turn this situation around,” said Herb Guenther, a co-chairman of the panel. “Our employee morale is in the tank. The esprit de corps has vanished.”

The nine-member panel said a culture of complacency and unprofessionalism contributed to the ability of two inmates to take control of a watchtower in the prison’s Morey Unit on Jan. 18.

Among the problems that panelists cited: low officer pay, deficient training, inmate overcrowding, inadequate staffing, vague security procedures and poor communication.


Comments are closed.


You have Free articles left this month.

Want access to all our reporting? Subscribe for unlimited access or login.