Gang Worries Lock Down 6 State Prisons This Year

State prison officials concerned about gang violence are locking inmates in their cells at high-security prisons statewide.

The Department of Correction says five of the six prisons have returned to normal operations.

In Eastern Carolina those prisons are Maury, Pasquotank and Bertie Correctional Institutions.

The violence began at the Scotland Correctional Institution in Laurinburg, which has been on lockdown off and on since January.

Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Pamela Walker says after gang-related problems among inmates broke out at Scotland, lockdowns were imposed within days at the Maury, Lanesboro, Pasquotank, Bertie and Foothills prisons. The goal was thwarting coordinated gang activity.

Neal Richards of the Chapel Hill Prison Books Collective says his organization collected prisoners' complaints of guards and inmates being attacked. Richards says the crackdown sparked hunger strikes and inmates intentionally flooding their cells.

Last week, WITN News asked the Department of Correction about the lockdowns. Our request for information didn't come until after the News & Observer in Raleigh published a story on the lockdowns this morning.


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  • by joe greenville on Mar 14, 2012 at 05:27 PM
    JUST HEARD ON THE NEWS, PRISONERS GETTING UNEMPLOYMENT.LIFERS AND REGULARS!!!!!!!!!!
  • by disgusted Location: n.c. on Mar 14, 2012 at 12:04 AM
    Everyone in prison is not violent and I am the first to admit,do the crime do the the time.But when is the punishment fair?My boyfriend practically raised hissself and took care of his two younger sibling cause his mom was sick in a will chair.Hustling was all he knew.When I got sick and the doctor doctor took me out of work,he said baby the bills got to be paid or we'll be on the streets. Disability had already denied me and and I was to the point,I couldn't even stand up alone.Once you get a felony on your records, doors are constantly slammed in your face.He was a nickel and dime hustler and caught 6 to 8 years.Where is the justice in that.They are treated less than humans.I don't care what you do everybody deserves compassion, if they are that difficult seperate them from population. We known never know when we will have a love one in that position and I guarantee the negative attitude will change.
  • by Ashley on Mar 11, 2012 at 04:47 PM
    I am going to give my opinion on this matter and I don't care who likes it and who don't. I have a fiance and a brother in law in one of these high security prisons and I also have a brother who is a correctional officer so I can see both sides of the fence. Some of the correctional officers are just as bad as the inmates that are incarcerated. There are more drugs in the prisons than you would ever think. Also not everybody in prison are bad people. Not everyone has committed violent crimes. Furthermore, it is not our place to judge anyone because we do not know the inmates incarcerated nor do we know their circumstances. Many of this prisoners get railroaded when they don't deserve it just because they have no maoney to pay 15,000-25,000 dollars for an attorney to get them off. It was very frustrating when the prisons went on lockdown because you could not find out anything about your loved ones. All that was told is that we are on lockdown and it is a security breach to tell you anything more. It is not right to lockdown a whole prison to where they have no contact with the outside world because a few gang members want to slice and dice each other. Stabbings happen everyday in these high security prisons but the public never hears about it. Its all hush hush. Inmates are treated like animals in certain prisons. I can't speak for all prisons but i do know that there are guards who harass the inmates and there are guards having intercourse with the inmates. We need to clean out the prisons with the dirty CO's and then maybe we wouldn't have the issues that we have. I have nothing against CO's because like I said my brother is a CO at a prison and not all CO' are dirty just like all inmates are not bad people and are not clowns.
    • reply
      by Native on Mar 12, 2012 at 06:14 AM in reply to Ashley
      Well said Ashley.
    • reply
      by Scott on Mar 12, 2012 at 07:39 AM in reply to Ashley
      Thank you ashley. Every word you wrote is the truth.
  • by MCI CO Location: greene on Mar 10, 2012 at 11:33 AM
    First of all the lock down was implemented for the safety of the inmate population. The gangs weren't out to hurt officers rather each other. I read a lot of comments up here about rehabilitation of inmates but the truth is a lot of these guys are never getting out. Inspite of that they still get all sorts of classes, support groups and religious gatherings in prison. Inmates aren't being abused but CO'S are by the same system that put them there.
  • by ralphie Location: ahoskie on Mar 10, 2012 at 09:09 AM
    Remember the dem 'if it saves just one child"?? OK here is my idea. Pass laws that say that unless exemplary cooperation with authorities in identifying other gang members is immediately given, then membership in a gang is a capital crime punishable immediately upon refusal to cooperate. Food, saved, wages of guards saved, on those who refuse. With the others- the round up of savage criminals results in inestimable savings to the innocent public in dollars, tears and lives. Hey, if it saves just thirty thousand children....!!!!!
  • by 250 Location: Jax on Mar 10, 2012 at 08:05 AM
    Call me foolish; BUT the phrase, LOCKDOWN when these clowns are supposed to be "LOCKED UP" does not compute. Put them in their cages and feed em B7C sandwiches on day old bread. With H2O to drink. Make incarceratiopn a "deterant" to crime!
  • by pirate/hawk Location: E N C on Mar 10, 2012 at 06:50 AM
    I woud just love for some of you to work just one day inside of a Prison, just one day. I myself am a Correctional Officer. The Prisons mentioned have inmates that have nothing to lose. Every time that I see where another staff is caught trying to bring something in, it gives all Corrrectional Officers a black eye.
  • by just know Location: raleigh on Mar 10, 2012 at 06:29 AM
    OK PEOPLE EACH ONE OF THESE CONVICT WAS CONVICTED OF SOME WRONG DOING...DID YOU NOT KNOW THAT IT'S PPL RIGHT IN YOUR NEIGHBOR HOOD PROBALY HAS KILLED RAPE MOLESTED STOLE AND E.T.C. STILL ON THE STREETS THESE PPL JUST GOT CAUGHT..EVERYBODY IS SOMEBODY IT TAKES WHOMEVER TO DO WHAT YOU DO..THE MAIN ONE TALKING ABOUT GIVING THESE PPL THE DEATH PENALTY ARE THE ONES UP TO NO GOOD.CHECK YOUR SELVES BECAUSE IT'S NEVER TOO LATE..TO GO TO JAIL.
    • reply
      by Ashley on Mar 11, 2012 at 04:49 PM in reply to just know
      Amen on that comment just know people truly need to check themselves.
  • by Rick/AKA/Imhotep slayer Location: BLAHammedville on Mar 10, 2012 at 05:24 AM
    Poster Imhotep should go preach to his brethren.Pretty sure they have the knack to absorb such stupidity.
  • by Sam Location: Kitty Hawk on Mar 9, 2012 at 10:57 PM
    Just give all of them the death penalty and save our future dollars for good things and good people instead of supporting those worthless pieces of trash in prison.
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