Inmates set fires at the state’s Norton prison. Weeks of unrest in Kansas lockups prompted Gov. Sam Brownback to announce a pay raise for prison workers.
The same group of inmates are responsible for recent disturbances at Kansas prisons, according to the Kansas Organization of State Employees, the Kansas City Star reports. After a reported fiery disturbance at the Norton prison Tuesday night, KOSE Director Robert Choromanski said 50 inmates would be moved from the facility to another prison. “These are the same inmates that caused unrest at (El Dorado Correctional Facility) on June 29,” Choromanski said. He added the inmates were not accustomed to the “strict control” at Norton and were angry that they had been transferred to a prison hours from their families.
Multiple law enforcement agencies and the Norton Fire Department responded Tuesday. The disturbance was under control at about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, about three hours after it began. The employee group tweeted that the disturbance was a “huge riot.” “Buildings are burning and some inmates have gotten weapons,” the group said at 11 p.m. The situation at Norton follows weeks of unrest in Kansas’ prisons, which prompted Gov. Sam Brownback to announce a pay raise for prison workers last month to help facilities deal with high staff turnover that has exacerbated safety issues.