After riot, jailers remove 570 inmates from Willacy County tent prison
Mon, 23 Feb 2015 18:29:06 GMT —
Jailers have now transferred 570 inmates from the Willacy County Correctional Center to other prisons after last week's riot.
Utah-based Management and Training Corp., which operates the tent prison, started moving inmates to other lockups on Sunday.
"So far 570 offenders have been moved from the Willacy County Correctional Center to other federal prisons in Texas and out of state," according to a news release from Management and Training Corp. "For security purposes, the locations of where they are being relocated will not be disclosed."
The tent prison holds nearly 2,900 inmates, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons. It primarily holds immigrants who aren TMt lawfully present in the United States.
The unrest started Friday morning, when inmates didn't show up for work duty, according to a news release from Management and Training Corp. Inmates said they were unhappy with medical services, a longstanding complaint.
Jailers placed the prison on lockdown, but inmates escaped from the tents and took over the recreation yard. They set three of the prison's housing units ablaze, violently shook the gate and wrecked the heating, cooling and ventilation systems.
Approximately 2,000 inmates participated in the disturbance, according to the news release.
The incident prompted a massive response from local, state and federal law enforcement, which surrounded the prison.
Negotiators resolved the situation Saturday night.
The Bureau of Prisons declined an interview, but released a statement saying Management and Training Corp. had regained control of the prison.
"MTC has requested our assistance in moving all BOP inmates out of the facility," according to the Bureau of Prisons statement. "We are making plans to move as many as 2,800 inmates to BOP institutions or other contract institutions, if needed."