UPDATED: 17 prisoners dead, five others injured in violent Georgetown Prison unrest

16 prisoners dead, five others injured in violent Georgetown Prison unrest

Georgetown Prison on fire

Georgetown Prison on fire

 The death toll in Thursday’s violent unrest at the Georgetown Prison has risen to 16, even  as authorities said calm has been restored to the maximum security facility.

Guyana’s Public  Security Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan said the incident was also engaging the attention of President David Granger

Earlier, one of the prisoners died at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation while the bodies of the others were found and retrieved at the prison itself. Five others who sustained serious burns about their bodies were taken to the hospital for emergency treatment.

Sources said the prisoners broke up the wooden beds and also armed themselves with pieces of steel that they used to “harpoon” prison service personnel who attempted to quell the unrest regarded as the worst in Guyana’s recent history. “When, with the smoke and the fire in there, they were trying to get them out, the prisoners started harpooning them. They broke up the bed in pieces and started ‘jooking’ up the prison officers and so they had to back off. I don’t know what is happening in there but it seems to be extremely serious but it is under control,” the source told Demerara Waves Online News on condition of anonymity.

Investigators said several of the inmates appeared to have died from suffocation caused by the thick smoke. At the time of the incident, a number of them were being moved from the area where the fire started to another area when a number of the prisoners resisted prison service personnel, slammed a door and prevented a number of the convicts from being affected by the smoke.

In addition to the discovery of several prohibited items such as cellular phones during a search of the jail Wednesday, authorities said the prisoners have been demanding their freedom.

The fire was set in the ‘capital’ offence block where a number of persons convicted for murder are held.

A number of the inmates Wednesday night and during the pre-dawn hours of Thursday attempted several times  Wednesday night to burn the prison.

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  • De castro  On 03/03/2016 at 2:25 pm

    Surprise surprise…incarceration
    is not the solution in today’s thinking
    In most of developed world prisons have become place of learning where
    inmates are taught skills that would
    be useful to them on release.
    Prisons were becoming universities
    of crime. Some of the most talented
    people were incarcerated for minor
    misdimenias while the more serious
    offenders were isolated in different
    prisons…..the more serious offenders
    should be put in high security detention
    centres deep in the Amazon.

    You cannot house serious criminals with first time offenders and expect
    different results….sooner or later
    bad apples will spoil the whole crate.

    GT prison should be converted to a
    training centre for lesser offenders
    and a new maximum security prison
    built somewhere in interior …
    Guantanamo bay style.

    Let’s hope the new kids on block
    learn from the mistakes of past.

    • caroll  On 03/05/2016 at 10:38 am

      You are so right. Guyana is in a corrupted state and will continue to be. Yes we also have it here in canada but per capita its not as rampant as it is there. So many deportees have been send back home for multiple crimes and they went back there with no support system and no job along with that they have lived her and never improve their knowledge all they want to do is thief sell drugs and kill. That is the fact if anyone Guyanese want to say its not true I will say to them wake up and call a bad apple a bad apple dont peanut butter and jam the situation

  • guyaneseonline  On 03/03/2016 at 6:49 pm

    Prison Riot: Everything was done to save prisoners – Director; panel to investigate circumstances

    Demerara Waves‎ – 4 hours ago
    Director of Prisons Carl Graham at an emergency press conference on Thursday afternoon was pellucid that everything was done to save the …

    • De castro  On 03/03/2016 at 7:23 pm

      Post mortems are not solutions…
      16 inmates lost their lives..many
      staff and inmates injured.
      One home for all criminals is
      downright stupidity …surely a recipe
      for disaster.
      Now let’s see what recommendations/decisions are
      made by prison authorities….??

  • needybad4u  On 03/03/2016 at 7:18 pm

    Wah Me goh tell Yuh

    de prison
    tief-man bruck jail
    dem a tief inside de prison lock-up.

    ~L Dabydeen

    • De castro  On 03/03/2016 at 7:36 pm

      Corruption in prison…it smells of dead fish….absolute waste of taxpayers monies….better house them in the Marriott hotel now.😈😈
      Today it cost more to build a
      prison than 5 * hotel.

  • caroll  On 03/05/2016 at 10:39 am

    Yes and we have the same kind of corruption here… in Canada.

    • De castro  On 03/05/2016 at 12:47 pm

      Corruption is not unlike prostitution
      It exists everywhere on the planet.
      How it is addressed is the question.
      Incarceration for serious crimes is
      a necessary evil we must live with.
      For minor offences laws and attitudes
      must change if the result is to be different.
      Guyana Canada USA UK EU no difference. By sharing info is way forward.

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