Rioting inmates trash N.S. jail

A dozen out-of-control prisoners left a Nova Scotia jail with smashed windows, broken sprinklers and damaged recreation equipment.

Two sections of the Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility remained locked down Wednesday, after a stabbing and riot at the jail the night before.

Corrections officials said an inmate was stabbed at about 9 p.m. Tuesday, prompting guards to lock down the entire jail. But some prisoners in another area refused to leave a day room and return to their cells.

Guards donned riot gear when 17 inmates — some wearing masks — started breaking sprinklers, windows and equipment, and covered security cameras.

Police were called in to provide backup but stayed outside the jail. Officers left before midnight without arresting anyone.

“Staff were able to get that under control by midnight,” said Sherri Aikenhead, spokeswoman for the Department of Justice.

David Horner, head of corrections for the department, said the inmate who was stabbed was released from hospital within hours.

Aikenhead said no correctional workers were hurt.

She said there were no fires, unlike a riot in April 2009 when 59 inmates caused extensive damage to the jail.

“We are relieved about that,” she said.

Cleanup and repairs were underway at the jail on Wednesday, as corrections staff looked for the makeshift knife that was used in the stabbing.

Opened in 2001, the jail is designed to hold 225 male and 48 female inmates in single cells. However, prisoners are often placed two to a cell because of overcrowding.

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