NYSCOPBA: Inmate attacks officer at Gowanda Correctional Facility


GOWANDA, N.Y. (WIVB) — The New York State Correctional Officers & Police Benevolent Association (NYSCOPBA) says an officer was attacked by an inmate at Gowanda Correctional Facility.

According to the union, the correctional officer was assaulted on September 29 while responding to a screaming inmate.

When the officer went to investigate, NYSCOPBA says the 34-year-old inmate was on the floor of his room and appeared to be under the influence of an unknown substance.

Additional help was called in. The union says the officer was then grabbed and thrown onto a bed by the inmate.

Pepper spray had no effect, they say, but staff were able to pull the inmate off the officer.

After bringing him under control, the inmate was taken to the infirmary, but he became “incoherent and unresponsive” there, the union says.

Medical staff administered two doses of Narcan and he became responsive, according to the union. He was then taken to a local hospital for observation.

“Once DOCCS reinstated inmate visitation there has been an uptick in drugs getting into the hands of inmates,” Western Region Vice President Mark Deburgomaster said. “All throughout this pandemic staff did an excellent job detecting contraband coming in through mailed packages.  Now with visitation occurring again,  they are tasked with another difficult situation of stopping visitors from bringing drugs into inmates. Until DOCCS takes this situation seriously these unprovoked attacks will continue.”

The officer who was attacked sustained injuries to his groin, wrist and back and was taken to a local hospital. No other staff members were injured.

Currently, the inmate is serving a 15-year sentence after being convicted of assault in Erie County in 2011.

Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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