Saint John, N.B., jail damaged after 16 prisoners erect barricade, riot

SAINT JOHN, N.B. — Prisoners barricaded themselves into a unit and caused extensive damage Saturday in a provincial jail in Saint John.

Nobody was injured in the incident at the Saint John Regional Correctional Centre.

A spokeswoman for the provincial Department of Public Safety says 16 people were involved in the disturbance at the jail on Old Black River Road in the city.

Meghan Cumby says that it began in the morning when a group of inmates erected a barricade and started damaging property in the jail.

Public Safety officers responded by locking down the unit.

“There’s extensive damage to the facility, and we’ll be assessing the damages and making repairs in the coming days,” said Cumby.

By late afternoon, all 16 of the people had been taken out of the barricaded area and transferred to other parts of the prison, or to other provincial jails.

Cumby says that the unit remained locked down after the incident.

“The police are conducting a criminal investigation and they’ll determine what charges may be laid as a result of this incident,” she said.

The jail was housing 153 people at the time of the incident.

The facility normally houses offenders who are serving a sentence of two years, less a day, or are remanded by the court as they await their trials.

Fire trucks responded to the disturbance, but Cumby said she couldn’t indicate if there was a fire.

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