Union calls for charges after attacks on officers
Due to a production error, this story was published incompletely on Friday. Here is the full story.
BROCTON — The union representing officers at the Lakeview Correctional Facility is asking for criminal charges to be filed after it claims two employees were assaulted at the Brocton location in November.
In a news release Thursday, the New York State Correctional Officers Police Benevolent Association said an inmate attacked officers at the medium security correctional facility when one officer asked for his identification. According to the release, the attack occurred at about 4:45 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18, inside the facility’s housing dorm.
“The inmate ignored the officer, walked by, turned and struck the officer three times in the face and neck,” the release said. “Two other officers in the dorm immediately responded and grabbed the inmate in a body hold. They forced him to the ground.
“The inmate continued to struggle with the officers and refused to put his hands behind his back. The two officers were able to get his hands behind his back and apply handcuffs. Once in handcuffs, the inmate complied.”
The inmate was described as a 26-year-old serving a 2- to 4-year sentence for grand larceny.
The injured officer reportedly suffered pain, swelling and abrasions to his left shoulder and face. He was taken to an outside hospital and treated and released.
The first attack reportedly took place at 7:45 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10, while an officer was escorting inmates out of the mess hall. An inmate, identified as a 29-year-old, allegedly punched an officer, who reportedly suffered a swollen jaw and mouth.
“Two serious assaults on staff within 10 days of each other is just another example why there needs to be significant discipline for inmates that attack staff,” said Mark Deburgomaster, Western Region vice president. “Without it, officers would be easy targets for attacks everyday. I would also encourage the Chautauqua County District Attorney’s Office to pursue criminal charges in both assaults. A strong message must be sent that this will not be tolerated.”
Patrick Swanson, Chautauqua County district attorney, said he was not aware of the alleged incidents until Thursday. In a message, he said, “As always, we will review these incidents and pursue any and all charges supported by the facts.”
When reached for comment regarding the latest attack, the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision said in a statement it has “zero tolerance for violent acts in our facilities. On Nov. 18, at Lakeview Shock Incarceration Correctional Facility, an incident involving an incarcerated individual who became physically aggressive with several security staff members was safely ended when the correction officers were able to gain compliance. The incarcerated individual suffered no injuries. Several staff members suffered injuries; two remained on duty and one left work to make a medical appointment.”