ALDEN — Seven corrections officers were injured in two separate fights with inmates at Wende Correctional Facility last month, union officials said.
Mark Deburgomaster, western region vice president for NYS Corrections Officers and Police Benevolent Association, said the first fight happened Aug. 25 as an officer was processing inmates who were heading into school.
The officer told an inmate that “he needed to bring personal items he was carrying back to his cell,” Deburgomaster said.
The officer was escorting the inmate to his cell when the inmate swung and missed. Another officer stepped in and the two took the inmate to the floor, but the inmate continued fighting, even after officers used OC spray. More officers arrived and the inmate was subdued.
Three officers were treated at Erie County Medical Center and released.
Two were treated at the prison and remained on duty.
The inmate, 34, is serving a 15-year term for burglarizing a home and beating and robbing an 86-year-old man in Albany County.
He was taken to a special housing unit.
Two officers were injured in a fight with an intoxicated inmate Aug. 31, Deburgomaster said.
The inmate began fighting after officers asked him to stop yelling.
Several inmates were being escorted when the inmate began yelling and screaming. He refused to stop after being given several orders.
He was ordered to submit to a pat frisk for contraband. The inmate suddenly spun off the wall and elbowed the officer in the forehead. The inmate was grabbed in a body hold and forced to the ground.
On the ground and still combative, the inmate elbowed a second officer in the nose.
The two officers were able to get handcuffs on the inmate and he became compliant.
The inmate, 22, is serving an eight-year term for a home invasion burglary in St. Lawrence County.
The attacks were the latest at prisons in Western New York, which have seen a rise in inmate violence in the past two years.
“This is a broken record that must be fixed,” Deburgomaster said. “Attacks on staff continue at an alarming rate and officers are getting injured every day. These latest two attacks at Wende involve two inmates who both were arrested and convicted with injuring victims in violent home invasions. Unfortunately they are reflective of a large portion of the inmate population – brazen, violent and with no regard for rules or authority.”