Fourth Hays State prisoner killed - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Fourth Hays State prisoner killed

CHATTOOGA COUNTY, GA. (WRCB) -- Just weeks after two guards were stabbed and three inmates killed, a fourth prisoner from Hays State Prison is dead.

The state says the incident happened at a transfer prison in Butts County, Georgia.

An Atlanta group that fights for prisoners rights recently contacted the jail about the turmoil and say they have yet to get a response.

The letter uses language such as the prison is "out of control" or "stabbing and beatings have been routine.

Sarah Geraghty with the Southern Center For Human Rights says, "The state has a duty to keep people in prison reasonably safe from all known harm. We can't eliminate all prison violence, but we can take steps to reduce it."

Lawmakers for the area say they have met with the department of corrections to get answers on why cell locks were broken and how dozens of weapons and cell phones keep showing up in the prison.

Representative Eddie Lumsden (R) says, "This is two-fold. This is not something that happened overnight. Within the department of corrections, there are certain procedures that should have been followed and some of them were not."

Geraghty went on to say, "At an appropriate state run facility gang members don't control who is permitted in the dorms, cell door locks function and people can't just roam around the prison at will."

This most recent killing leaves the prison with another black eye.

Leaders say since the stabbings, routine maintenance and more security have been added.

Lumsden says, "The situation has improved greatly. It's not perfect but has improved."

The state released this statement saying "Employee and prisoner safety is of the utmost importance."

It goes on to say the state is making changes to security and maintenance.

The GBI hasn't released any information on the inmate but is investigating.

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