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Apr 26, 2000

Weapons seized at prison

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When he appeared last month on “One on One” he hinted that there were too many weapons in the compound and something would soon be done. Today Prison Governor Bernard Adolphus made good on that pledge and the results were impressive.

Bernard Adolphus, Governor of Prisons

“Because of the number of incidents which were happening, we decided to clean up this whole place. We are trying to make this environment safe and the fact that some of our visitors were complaining, those volunteers who wanted to come in to help us said they were scared and worried because of the fact that too much dangerous implements and violent offenders around. So as a result of all those vibes that I have been receiving from people, we set up a smooth, slow operation and this morning we shut down the jail. No activities, no gangs went out as per usual. We kept everybody in and senior officers were assigned to various buildings and we systematically went through all the buildings and hence the reason we found all those articles, which are dangerous. Some we found, some where handed over to us voluntarily.”

It may not be the largest collection seized at the correctional facility but it is the first time that a big number of dangerous weapons have been found in just one clean sweep. While some items were voluntarily handed over to the prison officers, the officers had to do some searching of their own.

Bernard Adolphus

“They were found under beds, under corners, under boxes, between sheets, there are hidden places that takes a keen eye to find them, between bed boards and what have you, pots and between shelves and inside books. So it’s a systematical thing that has to be done, so we did it cool, calm and collectively with a senior officer observing each movements so nothing negative thing can happen.”

The collection included knives, workman tools and a variety of homemade weapons, like this hatchet and a gun that can fire .22 bullets.

Jacqueline Woods

“And this is just an ordinary coil spring?”

Bernard Adolphus

“Ordinary coil spring, stiff and once you hold that properly, and you put a round in it, it can go off. You can definitely do some hurt with this; you can hurt people with this. We understand that this was around for quite sometime. But we just got this out today. We were after this for quite sometime.”

Jacqueline Woods

“Now that this operation has taken place, lets say in the near future another operation is held and you happen to find more weapons, will the inmates then be charged with any kind of offence?

Bernard Adolphus

“Normally because we had a good cooperation from them, we said okay, good, no problem, just talking. We continued talking to them this morning and in the event that any other serious weapons are found in the future, the matter will be placed in front of the Board of Visiting Justices who will deal with the matter and the Board of Governors will be informed. But right now we are doing it in house. Internally, this is the first one that we are doing and this is an internal operation and previous operations have been done before in my time and before my time and while I was out. But since coming back, it has become necessary for us to clean in house and this is what we have done.”

Adolphus says the weapons will be taken to an undisclosed location where the collection will be destroyed.

All prison buildings except maximum security were searched. That section will be dealt with in the near future. Adolphus says no weapons were found in boot camp or the female quarters. The search began at 7:30 this morning and was completed in four hours.

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