WALLKILL – Several staff members were injured during two incidents at the medium-security Wallkill Correctional Facility last week, and a cell phone, two cell phone chargers, and drugs were recovered as a result of a search of inmates cells.
One incident, on Wednesday, January 12, involved a 32-year-old inmate with a cell phone in his cell. He fought with two officers as they subdued him. One officer, a lieutenant, was elbowed in the face as the inmate broke free. The prisoner was subdued again and handcuffed at which time he became compliant.
An initial search of the cell failed to turn up the phone, but officers searched six other cells in the area of the incident and found two cell phone chargers and 51 grams of a green leafy substance believed to be synthetic marijuana or marijuana, which was seized.
The phone was eventually recovered.
The inmate was transferred to Shawangunk Correctional Facility pending disciplinary charges.
He is serving an eight-year sentenced for a Suffolk County drug possession conviction in 2018.
On Sunday, January 16, two officers were injured when an inmate attacked an officer in the infirmary when he was ordered to submit to a pat frisk.
The inmate initially brought items to the infirmary that were prohibited. The officer assigned to the infirmary ordered the inmate to a wall to be frisked for contraband.
The inmate came off the wall and backhanded the officer, who grabbed the inmate in a body hold and with assistance from a second officer, brought the inmate to the floor. While on the floor, the inmate punched one officer in the shoulder before he was handcuffed.
The inmate was removed from the infirmary and placed in a special housing unit pending disciplinary charged.
Both officers were treated by facility medical staff for knee injuries and remained on the job.
Chris Moreau, regional vice president of the New York State Corrections officers PBA, criticized the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. “Like our other calls for more staffing and resources to reduce inmate violence, it all continues to fall on deaf ears,” he said.