Officer cut on nose during altercation at Elmira Correctional Facility, four others injured
ELMIRA, N.Y. (WENY) – Officials say an officer at the Elmira Correctional Facility was cut on the nose by an inmate wielding a make-shift weapon and four other officers were injured in an ensuing altercation.
According to the New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association (NYSCOPBA), the incident happened Friday, January 10 around 9:15 a.m.
Officials say the inmate, who was in his cell at the time of the attack, called the officer over to the cell. When the officer approached, the inmate reportedly reached through the bars with the weapon in his hand and hit the officer on the right side of the nose. The officer then retreated and called for assistance.
According to NYSCOPBA, additional staff arrived on scene and the inmate's cell door was open. Officers say the inmate then immediately started to come at officers and pepper spray was used, but it had no effect.
The inmate reportedly charged one officer, grabbed him around the waist and drove him into a set of cell bars. Staff then reportedly grabbed the inmate and forced him to the floor, where officers say he continued to struggle and ignore orders. Eventually officers, were able to restrain the inmate and he stopped struggling.
During the questioning, officers say the inmate told staff he flushed the object down the toilet. During a search of his cell, officers say they found a sharpened eyeglass part that had a handle attached to it. That was placed into evidence.
The inmate, who was identified only as a 25-year-old man, was placed in a Special Housing Unit. According to the NYSCOPBA, the inmate is serving a nine year sentence after being convicted in Kings County of Robbery, Attempted Murder, Criminal Possession of a Weapon and Assault.
The officer who was injured was taken to a local hospital and treated for a one inch cut to his nose. He did not return to duty.
During the struggle, four officers reportedly sustained minor injuries and were treated by facility medical staff. They all remained on duty.
“Make-shift weapons and drugs have been a constant problem at Elmira Correctional Facility. As inmate advocates continue to call for reduced disciplinary measures, our staff continue to be the subject of unprovoked attacks,” said Mark Deburgomaster, Western Region Vice President. “This was an attack by an inmate who has a history of violence and we are thankful that all the officers injured were not seriously hurt. This is exactly why significant disciplinary measures need to exist to deter this type of behavior. Without them, it exposes staff and other inmates to potentially dangerous situations at the hands of inmates who realize there are no repercussions for violent behavior.“