Prison That Saw Riot Could Lose Guard Towers

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Lucasville, Ohio (AP) -- Officials want to abandon most of the guard towers at an Ohio prison where nine inmates and a guard were killed in a riot 16 years ago.

Warden Phillip Kearns says double security fences and warning technology now in use at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility mean the prison in Lucasville could get by with just two of the eight towers.

He says leaving the other six vacant would allow him to reassign the officers to work inside the prison and cut down overtime costs.

The union for corrections officers and other workers at the facility plans to fight the decision, calling the towers the "last line of defense between the inmates and the community."

The Lucasville prison was built in 1973. There are no guard towers at Ohio's newer prisons.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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