Mass breakout thwarted at Lusignan Holding Bay

Ministry of Public Security, October 16, 2018

On Monday, October 15, 2018, at about 16:16 hrs, several prisoners in the Holding Bay at Lusignan Prison began behaving in a riotous manner. They hurled hundreds of missiles at ranks officers, damaged the inner Holding Bay fences and exited the Confined Area. The prisoners then attempted to breach the main exit gate but were unsuccessful.

There were five hundred and fifty-eight (558) prisoners in the facility with eighty (80) personnel from the Guyana Police Force, Prison and Fire Services on duty. Several attempts were made by officers and ranks to enter the location using shields and tactical gear but were forced to make a tactical withdrawal, securing the facility’s perimeter.

As night fell, several prisoners used missiles to damage four (4) perimeter lights. They then set fire to items, including mattresses and pallets, which were placed along the fence. The fires also caused damage to the CCTV monitoring room.

After repeated warnings to prisoners to desist from their riotous behavior, ranks reverted to the use of rubber pellets. After this approach failed, live rounds were used. The situation became calm after eight (8) prisoners were hit by pellets. The eight who were injured were Cleveland Williams, Lester Joseph, Teaive Cush, Raymond Jones, Corwyn Arthur, Anirudh Prashad, Lakeram Singh and Lexroy Rigby. Six (6) were escorted to Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation for medical attention and later sent to Georgetown Prison, whilst two (2) received medical attention on location.

The prisoners later requested an audience with the Director of Prisons (ag) Gladwin Samuels. During this engagement, mention was made of prisoners not receiving lunch, the facility’s physical infrastructure, periods of imprisonment and the behaviour of some of the junior ranks. These concerns were noted and actions will be taken where necessary.

At about 21:15 hrs food was re-issued since the prisoners had destroyed the initial meal prepared for dinner. The situation remained calm up until 23:00hrs, when more joint services’ units were placed on standby after prisoners from Holding Bay One and two others began breaking the inner fence. Nevertheless, this was stopped at 00:30hrs and the situation returned to normalcy.

The Lusignan facility remains secure and under control.

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