Las Vegas Sun

November 17, 2019

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Threats against staff prompt Nevada prison lockdowns

High Desert State Prison

AP Photo / John Locher

This April 15, 2015, photo shows guard towers at High Desert State Prison in Indian Springs, one of Nevada’s toughest prisons.

Threats against staff at two state prisons prompted officials to lock down yards and “problem areas,” according to the Nevada Department of Corrections.

The safety precautions, which began last week, were ordered at Ely State Prison and High Desert State Prison, about 40 miles northwest of Las Vegas, officials said.

A statement provided by the Department of Corrections did not detail the threats.

Authorities, meanwhile, have been gathering intelligence and conducting meetings with inmates to talk about the threats, officials said. Some inmates have been relocated to other facilities.

Prison staffers have also received additional training, officials said.

Prison officials were working with Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak’s office, which declined comment.

“This is challenging work, but our staff is going about it professionally and we’re starting to see results,” the statement said.

In the past few days, some inmates have been allowed to leave their cells to work with Silver State Industries, a prison labor program, officials said.

The lockdowns will continue “until the threats to staff have been eliminated,” the statement said.