Prison Inmates Attack Two Employees And A Chaplin At “Gangster’s Paradise”

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CHESTER, IL. (KTVI) - Inmates at the Menard Correctional Center in Chester assaulted three employees Tuesday, according to the Illinois Department of Corrections.

In response to the assault, several employees picketed the prison.

"The working conditions here are unsafe," Corrections Officer Tony Williams said. "It could happen to anyone at anytime."

Williams said at least a dozen inmates assaulted two correctional officers and a Chaplin.

"Anytime you walk into this facility you are in danger," he said.

WIlliams and the other employees, who were picketing, blame budget cuts.

"We are understaffed and overcrowded," Williams said. "It just makes it really tough on everyone."

Kevin Hirsch is the President of ASFCME Local 1175.

"“The staff that run these facilities know best," Hirsch said." "We have three beds, and we are about to get 17 inmates."

Hirsch said the injured employees were sent to a hospital, but all of them are okay.

Officials with the Illinois Department of Corrections said "employee safety is a top priority."

They added that any budget cuts were to "increase efficiency and save tax payer dollars."

However, Hirsch said the budget cuts put employees and the public in danger.

"What happens is that there are so many inmates that they get released early," he said.

The prison has 3,700 inmates.

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