Washington State Penitentiary lockdown expected to continue until Friday

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WALLA WALLA -- A unit at the Washington State Penitentiary remained on lockdown today after an assault on a correctional officer.

Unit G in the prison's West Complex was locked down after the officer was assaulted about 7 p.m. Monday, said Shari Hall, prison spokeswoman. Unit staff responded immediately and the officer was transported to a local hospital and released. The officer sustained no substantial injuries, Hall said in a release.

The unit is one of four close-custody facilities in the West Complex. A total of 187 inmates are affected by the lockdown, which is expected to continue until Friday.

No other areas of the penitentiary have been affected by the lockdown and are on normal status.

Hall said the prisoner involved has been placed in segregation. She said the preliminary investigation indicates this was an isolated incident, "but we will be better able to confirm that once the investigation is complete."

As with previous unit lockdowns, the restrictions will be lifted slowly over several days to ensure there are no further incidents, Hall said.

Andy Porter can be reached at andyporter@wwub.com or 526-8318. Check out his blog at blogs.ublabs.org/randomthoughts.

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