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Prison Breakdown: Officials Still 'Not Clear' About Orleans Parish Inmate Barricade

The Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office continues to investigate the circumstances surrounding an incident that occurred late Friday night at the Orleans Justice Center, the city's modernized prison which opened less than two years ago. A dozen maximum security inmates "barricaded themselves in a housing unit" at the prison resulting in five injured inmates, according to a statement from prison officials.


The multi-million dollar prison complex has been lauded by the Sheriff's team for its implementation of cutting-edge security technologies, such as nearly one thousand 24-hour video surveillance cameras and more x-ray machines. Spokespeople for the prison have often quoted statistics that illustrate drops in inmate-on-inmate altercations, stabbings, and inmate-on-staff attacks. Still, reports to the contrary have arisen about the $150 million prison. Experts monitoring the prison testified in federal court as recently as February 2016 as to the "disturbing" level of violence that occurs within the Justice Center's walls. 


Still, the Sheriff's Office stated that "it is not yet clear" how last night's events unfolded -- and what led up to the barricade situation. The incident occurred at around 8PM, when the on-duty deputy was out of the housing units. An hour later, a team of deputies in protective gear entered into the unit through the back and diffused the situation, said the Sheriff's Office. 

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