News Releases

Staff Controls Riot at Calipatria State Prison

For Immediate Release
June 14, 2010

Shawn McLinn, Correctional Lieutenant
(760) 348-7000 Extension 6002

CALIPATRIA – On Saturday, June 12, 2010 at approximately 2:00 p.m., inmates in Calipatria State Prison (CAL) Facility A began fighting in the recreation yard. The fighting was contained to Facility A, which houses approximately 870 inmates, of which approximately 540 are General Population inmates.

Correctional staff immediately responded, formed into tactical units, and systematically regained control of the recreation yard by using pepper spray, less lethal force, and lethal force options.

“I want to thank all of the staff at CAL for their quick and courageous response to stop this major disturbance,” Said Derral Adams, Calipatria State Prison Warden (A). Staff’s dedication to duty was displayed Saturday by how quickly and safely they were able to control the fighting.”

As a result of the incident, more than 35 inmates were treated by medical staff at the institution for minor non-life threatening injuries and two inmates with more serious injuries were transported to a local outside hospital for treatment.

Inmate S. Johnson (P89629), who was in the general area of the incident, was transported to the CAL Triage and Treatment Area where medical staff immediately performed life saving measures. Inmate Johnson was soon thereafter pronounced deceased. At this time it does not appear that Inmate Johnson was involved with the incident and had no injuries consistent with any Use of Force options. Inmate S. Johnson was serving a 37 year sentence for Second Degree Murder. The County Coroner is investigating this death and next of kin have been notified.

No CAL staff were injured as a result of this incident and the institution has been placed on a modified program pending investigation into the cause of the riot.