Two officers injured in Lieber prison riot

01/19/2012 1:03 AM

01/19/2012 10:49 AM

Updated 10:45 a.m.

An inmate dormitory at the Lieber Correctional Institution in Ridgeville remains locked down today after inmates rioted late Wednesday after overpowering guards and stealing their keys, authorities said.

The overpowered officers were released, said Clark Newsom, spokesman for the S.C. Department of Corrections.

Newsom said two corrections officers were treated and released at a local hospital although Dorchester County officials said three were transported. Newsom says there were no reports of inmates being injured.

The riot began about 9 p.m. in the Ashley A&B Dorm, a high-security section, which houses about 230 inmates, Newsom said. It is not known how many inmates rioted.

As many as 200 outside law enforcement officers were summoned to the prison to set up a perimeter.

“The institution is secure. The public is safe,” Newsom said.

Authorities reportedly used tear gas to restore order. At one point, there were about 200 law enforcement officers at the prison and they are now leaving.

Newsom did not immediately return phone messages Thursday about how the situation was resolved.

Maj. John Garrison, spokesman for the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, said that there were law enforcement officers from all over the tri-county area outside the prison, waiting for more information.

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