November 28, 2020

Short-staffed state prison put on lockdown

With enormous staff shortages, the Mississippi Department of Corrections put part of one state-run prison on lockdown. Other state prison facilities also face similar, significant staff shortages.

Commissioner Pelicia Hall says in a news release that visitation and other privileges are also canceled indefinitely at that prison, the South Mississippi Correctional Facility in Leakesville.

Hall said Friday that the prison was holding 3,051 inmates — 31 short of capacity. The staffing vacancy rate there is 48 percent.

Movement is restricted in a part of the prison that houses more than 1,800 inmates. Other parts of the prison have normal operations.

She says lockdown also could be used at two other state prisons, if needed. She says staffing vacancy rates are 46 percent at Central Mississippi Correctional Facility and 42 percent at the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.