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Eye On Boise

One inmate slept through prison riot

Lawmakers learned new details this morning about the prison riot on Jan. 2nd in which inmates wrecked a new temporary housing unit that had been set up to allow out-of-state inmates to be brought back to Idaho. There were 199 inmates in the unit at the time. Four were injured. The officer who was in the control room at the time used a shovel to break a window and get away from the rioting prisoners, prison officials told JFAC this morning during their budget hearing. Once the inmates entered the control room, they burned the videotape of the disturbance. “At the end of the event, we had one inmate missing,” state Corrections Director Brent Reinke told the joint budget committee. After a search of the unit, he was found: “He was sound asleep on his bunk.” The inmate had put a pillow and blanket over his head and ignored the fuss.

The temporary unit will reopen in March, Reinke said, with “a different type of inmate.”

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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