Ont. prison under lockdown after overnight riot

CAMPBELLFORD, Ont. — Officials at an eastern Ontario medium-security prison invoked the riot act Wednesday after one-third of inmates took over a portion of the Warkworth Institution overnight.

Nearly 200 inmates had gained control of the infirmary and obtained various medication, said Ann Anderson, the assistant warden of management services.

“It is under control. There is no risk to the safety and security of the prison,” she said.

Four prisoners have been transferred to a hospital in Campbellford for suspected drug overdoses. Andersons said all remain in stable condition.

The riot began at 9 p.m. Tuesday when the inmates refused to return to their cells from the yard, leading to a number of fires being set outside.

Riot teams were called in from nearby Millhaven, Joyceville and Kingston penitentiaries to regain control of the prison.

The highly specialized teams were using tear gas and were armed with riot gear.

The Riot Act Proclamation Act was invoked at 6 a.m. Wednesday and allows the use of whatever force is necessary to gain control of the situation.

Anderson said inmates were systematically being escorted back to their cells Wednesday morning.

No injuries have been reported.

The prison will remain under lockdown until further notice.

Warkworth penitentiary has 576 medium-security prisoners.

Campbellford is 175 kilometres east of Toronto.

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