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Four "Lifers" Among Six Prisoners Charged In Bertie Prison Assault

Six prisoners, four who are serving life sentences for murder, have been charged with this weekend's assault of correctional officers at Bertie Correctional Institution.

Windsor police served assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury warrants on the six yesterday. They are Michael Willis who is serving a life sentence for murder from Wake County, Kyle Bunch who is serving a life sentence for murder from Pasquotank County, Joseph Canday who is serving life for a murder from Wilson County, Ricky Lytch who is service a life sentence for murder in Cumberland County, Jay Brooks who is serving an 18 year sentence for second degree murder from Pitt County, and Zebroan Artis who was serving a sentence for felony breaking and entering.

Warrants say the correction officers were attacked with steel toe boots, a baton, and a broom handle Sunday evening around 8:30 p.m. The Department of Public Safety says the assaults happened when officers spotted a prisoner giving another prisoner a cell phone during a routine search.

Four correction officers were transported to a local hospital, while two others sought medical attention on their own.


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Six state correction officers were injured after authorities tried to confiscate a cell phone last night at Bertie Correctional Institution.

Department of Public Safety spokesman Keith Acree says Sunday night around 8:30 p.m. officers were conducting a routine search when they saw one inmate pass a cell phone to another prisoner.

As officers tried to confiscate the cell phone, Acree says a group of inmates started assaulting them. Four correction officers were transported to a local hospital, while two others sought medical attention on their own.

Acree says at least seven inmates took part in the assault and their investigation is continuing. All of the correction officers were treated and released from the hospital.

Bertie is a 1,000 cell close security prison for men in Windsor.

Earlier this year the prison administrator and a unit manager were reassigned after an inmate death. The prison administrator eventually retired, while the unit manager was fired.

The prison was also one of six prisons that was locked down over a several month period because of gang violence.


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