AP NEWS

Report: Guard at Massachusetts prison assaulted by inmate

February 12, 2020 GMT

SHIRLEY, Mass. (AP) — A female guard at a maximum-security prison in Massachusetts was assaulted by an inmate with an “unknown liquid” who then set a fire in his cell, a state prisons spokesman said.

The attack occurred at about noon Tuesday at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley while the correctional officer was escorting medical staff dispensing medications, Jason Dobson, a spokesman for the state Department of Correction said in a statement.

The liquid came through a door slot in a restrictive housing unit. The inmate also grabbed the guard, who pulled free.

The inmate was taken from the cell so the fire, possibly started with a radio battery, could be extinguished, he said.

The guard and inmate were taken to the hospital. Their names and the nature of their injuries were not disclosed. The prison was not locked down.

Several other inmates were evacuated from their cells and treated for smoke inhalation.

The alleged assault is the latest problem at the prison. Four guards were hurt when they were attacked by inmates last month. The prison was locked down earlier this month when an inmate stabbed a fellow prisoner.

Prisoner advocates have sued the department, saying correctional staff were unfairly retaliating against inmates who had no involvement in last month’s attack.