Norton Prison inmates being transferred following "major riot"

Norton State Prison (KHGI)

About 100 Norton State Prison inmates are being transferred following a Tuesday night riot.

Samir Arif, a spokesperson for the Kansas Department of Corrections, told NTV about 50 inmates are headed to Lansing while the remaining will be going elsewhere. He said these inmates are creating difficult security challenges.

Officials say the prison is under control, but they tell NTV the situation is still under investigation.

An organization representing corrections officers called it a "major riot," said the Associated Press. Officials say local and state law enforcement, including the fire department were called to the scene.

According to Terry Petrie, the public information officer for the prison, the disturbance began at about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday.

A mattress was lit on fire using, most likely a contraband lighter, said Petrie.

The disturbance continued after the smoke detector when off and the inmates were evacuated into the yard. While it could take a week or longer to determine what happened, Arif said preliminary investigations suggest some inmates may have broken into a storage closet, using rakes and a shovel as weapons. Petrie said it was possible inmates were also using rocks as weapons.

He said in an attempt to subdue the inmates, two staff members sustained minor injures including scrapes. Petrie said they did not require hospital attention.

Arif said the incident was under control by about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

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