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Prison Under Fire: Guards At North Branch Rally For Top Officials To Resign

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CUMBERLAND, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland’s prison system–out of control. Correctional officers call for action after security leaders fail to warn them about a planned inmate attack.

It’s just one of a dozen assaults in recent weeks.

Monique Griego has the newest problem inside a state prison.

Earlier this week, a corrections officer was stabbed multiple times by an inmate. That officer later learned prison officials knew he was being targeted, but never told him.

Corrections officers from North Branch Correctional Institution in Western Maryland rally for the resignation of top prison officials. They say security leaders knew about a threat against two officers, but never told them.

Monday, one of the officers was stabbed in the ribs, head and arms by an inmate serving life. It was the prison’s 15th attack on an officer in just 30 days.

“You just have a lot of bad dreams about something like this. You don’t realize how hard it hits you until after it’s said and done,” said Herbert Hilliard, attacked by inmate.

The inmate made the threat in a letter to a prison official. In it, he said:

“I do run security in this prison. When I say move, my men move. Remove these two officers or I will take action into my own hands with body harm on those two officers.”

In a statement to WJZ, the Department of Public Safety said:

“The mission of DPSCS is to protect the safety of the public, our employees and the inmates. Officer safety should never be compromised. DPSCS is taking the threat letter investigation very seriously.”

Baltimore City also has its own prison problems–with state leaders already under fire for failures in the system.

This week, Tavon White, a Black Guerrilla Family gang member, pleaded guilty to running a sophisticated drug ring from behind bars. In all, 25 people were indicted, including 13 corrections officers.

Corrections officers are asking five officials to resign.

The other assaults on officers ended with them suffering only minor injuries.

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