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Riot Erupts at Central California Prison

Riot Erupts at Central California Prison

Published September 25, 2009

A riot erupted among Latino gangs at a central California prison, sending more than two dozen inmates to area hospitals for injuries ranging from stab wounds to bruises. One inmate remained in serious condition Thursday, The Associated Press reports.

"Exactly what they were fighting over, we're still trying to figure that out," said Lt. Doug Snell, a spokesman at Avenal State Prison. "It's still a big mess." It took 16 ambulances responding from four counties to carry the injured to five hospitals, according to AP.

Inmates at the medium-security facility in the southern Central Valley reportedly used canes, walkers and foot rests from wheelchairs to beat one another Monday night. About 193 inmates were involved, and 30 weapons were confiscated, prison authorities said. "That's very significant, and it's very troubling," said Terry Thornton, spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections.

The melee at Avenal State Prison came about six weeks after a clash between Black and Latino gangs exploded at the California Institution for Men in Chino that left 175 inmates injured. The latter riot resulted in the destruction of seven housing units and transfer of more than a thousand inmates.

Written by BET.com Staff

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