Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Prison Gangs Flex Muscles, Boost Attacks on Workers

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Prison Gangs Flex Muscles, Boost Attacks on Workers

Article excerpt

Prison gangs have stepped up their tactics of violence and intimidation to gain influence in jails, guards and state lawmakers say.

And, they say, the arrival of young gang members with long sentences and little hope has led to bolder attacks.

"Every day I leave I celebrate, and every day I walk in I pray," said Reginald Steward, a guard at the Stateville Correctional Center.

Steward said he had been beaten and had human waste thrown in his face.

"If you sit here and worry that this might be the day, you will go crazy," he said.

Guards say gang members see hits against authority as a way of gaining the respect of fellow inmates and rising in the prisoners' hierarchy.

Crowding leaves a limited space to put inmates who attack employees. That should change when the state opens a 500-bed super-maximum security prison in Tamms in far Southern Illinois to house many of the system's most violent inmates.

There, all inmates will be locked down 23 hours a day, and they will not be allowed to mingle with other inmates. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.