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Memo to Commissioner on Lee Riot, CCA, 2004

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PattiR. Webb,Warden







Ms' GeorgiaDunn, Mr. Don Bottom, and myself were directedto review the Critical
that occurredat Lee AdjustmentCenteron Septemb
er 14, 2004. We agreedon two days,
Septernber27ft and286. We met at NaturalBridgeLodgeon Wednesday,
er 26,2004
to review a tapeand what reportswe hadbeengiven. we decidedto take a tour of the facility
andtalk to staffandinmates.
On Septonber27, we went to the facility and met with Archie Moore, Internal Affairs
DonnaStivers,AssociateWarden.We completedthe tour of the yard,North Dorm, andthe
destroyedby the fue on this day andbegantalkingto staff. Ms. MelanieTurner,CCA Regional
lncident Commander,was at the facility, thus allowing us to discussthe situationwith
Vermont also had representatives
present;however, ttt.y *rr. not there for investigative
pu{posesbut to ensurethe vermont inmates'needswerebeingmet.
During our discussions
with staff we discoveredan underlyingtheme. Numerouschangeshad
been made during the past six monthswhen LAC beganre-eiving Vermont inmates. Such
changesincludedcontrolmovement,schedulingof activities,and feiOing. Containmentfences
hadbeenerectedto assistwith movement.Thesechangeswerefrom the ftrporate office.
The numberof Vermontinmateswas originallyonly 200; however,in Juneor July this number
increasedan additional 200 due to a problem at Marion Adjusiment Center with Vermont
inmates. Two hundredKentuckyinmateswereremovedfrom LAC in orderto accommodate
additionalVermont population. The total populationfor LAC includedapproximately400

Kentuckyand 400 vermont inmates. Theredoesnot appearto be problem
betweenthe two
groupsof inmates.
During the pastthreemonthsoMr. Eckmanimplernentedseveral
and rumorsregardingstatepay.
Thesechangeswerenot madeknownto the corporateoffic e.
Therealso seemedto be someconcernregardingMr. RandyEckman,s
lack of communicating
with staff andinmates.It appearshe would tell themwhat changwh,
**i"d; however,he did
not offer reasonsasto why. Staff asa rule do not like changes,andby
not discussing
staff to explain ttre ultimategoal, the staff were not gtu"i tftr opport*iiyto ..buythemwith
into,, the
progmrn' They, in turn, ventedtheir frustrationto and aroundinmates.
and staff
wereonly "feeding"offeach otherandaddingto thedissention.
The inmateswe talked to also voiced much of the sameconcernsoffered
by the staff. The
underlyingthemesagainwere changesand failure to communicate.They
shessedtherewas no
problernbetweenvermont and Kentucky inmates. Kentucky inmates
*Lrr upr.t that Vermont
inmatesdid not haveto pay the $2.00co-payfor medical. This too caused
unrestbecauseof a
failureof the Administrationto communicatethedifferenceof thetwo state
The staffand the majorityof the inmatesdid not appearto know the incident
wasgoingto occur
on this particularevening. They did have rumois of a sit-down strike,
which was to have
occurredthreemonthsago. They placedtwo inmatesin segregationfor investigation.
was not enoughevidenceand ultimately the inmateswere released. Sincethat
time morale
continuedto decline amongboth staff and inmates. The top administrativestaff
discussissueswith Mr. Eckman;however,they foundit very dif;Ecultto persuade
him to "fr*g"
his mind. Somestaff we interviewedwas not comfortablenor felt conddentenough
to express
their opinionto Mr. Eclanan.
A few inmateswereawareof what was to
9"cur on the daythe incidenttook place. However,it
was not known institutionwide. The Psychologist
did reiort to the Officer in medicalthat she
had beentold somethingwas going to happenthat night.- Sheinformedthe Officer
as shewas
leaving at approximately6:30 p.m. It was uncleaias to whetheror not the
staff member
informedthe shift Captain. It seemstherehad beengrumblingfor sometime about
goingto happenwith nothingoccurring. staffmay haie gotten-complacent.
one staff member,who went on vacation after the incident, returnedto work during
investigation.He informedIntemalAffairs that he had reportedto the Captainhis observations
of two inmateson the recreationfield duringthe pasttnonthor so. It appeared
to him the two
inmateswere controllingvariouspossibleillegal artiviti.s. The two inmaites
alwayshad several
inmatesaroundthemwjth groupsof inmatescomingand going. The Captaindid not report
informationto InternalAffairs. Thesetwo inmater*"trl*^ediately placedin adminishative
segregation.This leadsus to believethe communication
problemrnuyutro havebeenoccurring
further downthe chainof command.


Lack of communicationto both staffand inmates
to explain changes.

2' Lack of communicationup and down the chain
of command.
3. Failure of the containmentfencesto contror
location of inmates.
o containment fenceson the recreation
yard and around dorms did not contain the inmates.
o The fences were npeeled up" from
the bottom and gates were doubled in two to make
battering rams. This hasbeen corrected.
4. Changesin recreationtimes
o It appearsMr' Eckman would periodically
changethe yard time and each time a change
was made, it resultedin less recreationtime.
o Two dorms were allowed to go to the yard
area, and one dorm was scheduled for the gym
on a rotating basis.
o It should be noted the recreationyard
is small and to allow 800 inmates in this areaat one
time would be impossible to control and supervise,thus
creating a dangeroussituation.
o control movement to recreation
was monitored and accesswa, giJ"r, to the inmates
every 15 minutes' However, with count and meal schedules,
less"time for recreational
activity was the result.
5. lnmate Canteen
o Complaints from inmates and staff regarding
posting of state pay, money orders, and
refundsin a timely manner.
r One staffstated he went to the fiscal office
to inquire about a refund and money order
for an inmate and found money transactionsaateA six months
priot had not been
o Canteenmanagerresigned.
o This individual has not been replacedand
her duties were given to the individual who
posts the monies to the account.
o Reductionin selectionof products
o The canteenlist was reduced from approximately
four pages to one. Examples are
reducing from four selectionsof diffeient shampoosdown to trvo
o Items rsmoved from canteenlist: ice cream,chewing gum,
and baby oil.
o Reductionin hours
r Went from two times per week, open window,
to one time per week package.
Inmates must submit a written order two days in advanceand are allowed
to go to the
canteenone time per week to pick up their order. No substitutionsare
made. This
also createsproblems when money is not postedin a timely mamer.
o Aspirin
r Sold in packagesof two for $.26. Bottles of generic
aspirin of 100 tablets are cheaper
when doing the math.




6. DisciplinaryProcess
o Restrictionsin canteenup to 90 days
o Mass punishmentof entire wing in a dorm when one bed areafound dirty or cluttered.
No one was allowed to go out of the wing until the problem was corrected. Area
inspectionshadbeenoccurringat 8:00 a.m.;however,on Monday,September13s, this
waschangedto 7:00a.m.per Mr. Eclanan.Staffwereinformedof the changeon Friday;
however,the memoto the inmatepopulationexplainingthe changedid not get posted
until Mondayafternoon,Septemberl3u.
o Ice scoopfoundinsidetheice machine.Ice machinelockedfor oneweek.
o Allegedgamblingat pool tables. Pool tableswere off limits to the entirepopulationfor
7. Visitation
o Nine tableswereremovedfrom visitationarea.
8. StatePayreduction
o Staff had beentold by Mr. Eckmanhe was not going to pay a daily wage when the
inmatesonly workedoneor two hoursper day. He wasgoingto dividethe daily wageby
hoursactuallyworked. Staff had beentalking aboutthis, thus inmatesoverheard.This
wasto be implemented
9. Lack of informationon VermontInmates
. The entire inmate file was not forwarded from Vermont. The facility had contacted
CCA; however,the issuewasnot resolved.Thereweretimeswhenthe Vermontinmates
for Vermont
o The majority of Vermont inmatesare sex offendersand are prescribedpsychotropic
medication.Sexoffendershavea historyof behaviorproblems,andthe vastnumberleft
11.Numberof SORTmembers
o At the time of the critical incident the number of SORT memberswere approximately
seven. It is my understanding
recruitrnentis now occurring. LAC doeshave a signed,
written agreement
that assistance
from EasternKentuckyCorrectionalComplexCERT
will be provided.
12.Lackof staffqualifiedto usefirearms
o Mr. Eckmandid not allow all staff to be re-certifiedannuallyon firearms. When the
incidentoccuned,only a selectfew who reportedto the institution were qualified to
utilize firearmsandgas.
13.Lack of InmateProgramming
o Due to additionaloperationaldutiesgiven to staff, severalprogramshad beensuspended
dueto lack of time. Vermont requiresall their inmatesto participatein a cognitive-type

This is apatt of CCA's contract. This programis availableonly to Vermont
The religiousprogramwasweakenedwhenthe Chaplainresignedand is now
upon volunteers. It is
of ensuring
with thevolunteers.
AA, andNA programswerediscontinuedwhenthe staff
to theseprogrirmswasgiventhe respbnsibilityof the InstitutionalparoleOfficer
' It appearsno onehasbeenmonitoringthe facility dueto promotions,
activationfor military duty. This positionmay not havepreventedihir irrrid.rrt if
we weretold concerningMr. Eclcrnan's
styleis true.
15. AdministrativeStaff
o The administrativestaff did not feel comfortablereportingwhat
they saw as potential
problemswith operationaldecisionsto rmyonein CCA or the Stateof Iientuckv.
' The facility had a difficult time clearingcount the next day due to
give stafftheir names.The inmateswere dislocatedfrom their original dorm due to the
fire and a pictureID book wasnot available.They do havethe piJtureson a computer;
however,all equipmentwasdamaged,networklinesburned,andilectricitv was off.
o Openthe linesof communications
with staffandinmates.
o Changesshouldbe gradualwith time glven to both staff and inmatesto ask questionsand
o Stopmasspunishmentfor the smallproblerns.
o Qualifr all securityandselectprogramstaff with firearmsannually.
o Postmoneyto accountsin a timelymanner.
o Increasecanteenlist, review procedure,and scheduleto determineif additionalday at the
canteenis feasible.
o Reviewpresentcountandfeedingschedules
to determineif recreationtime canbe extended.
o Place security cameraswith recording capability at various locations throughout the
institution. Therearenumerousblind spotscreatedby thephysicaldesignof the Ac-itity.
o Monitor adjusfrnent
processin relationto lossof privileges.
o Statemonitorto visit a minimumof onetime per week.
o Expandedprogramming
by hiring additionalstaffor increased
utilizationof unit staff.
o Unit stafffollow up on inmaterequestsor questions.
o Review visitation area and scheduleto increasethe area or additional days to ensure
Kurtucky andvermont inmatesaretreatedfaidy andconsistently.
o MasterphotoID book(hardcopy).

o obtain the informationconcerningVermont inmatesand provide staff
training on dealing
with behavior-problem
It is the opinionof the ReviewCommitteethis incidentwascreatedby laek
of communication
and down the chainof commandandtoo many changeswithin a shlrt period
of time. Several
things were taken from the inmatesand nothing *ir glven to thern in
return. A few staff
attemptedto explainotheroptionsto Mr. Eckman;howeier, his strict management
styledid not
oTil *y leniency. Staffshouldnot be inhibitedto offer their opinionsandi"pott
to supervisors
The teruionof the institutionhadbeengraduallyincreasingduringthe pastfew
months. Morale
of both staff and inmateshad been decreasing. wrren-the five oi ,o inmates
destruction,this is all that was neededto get the other inmatesto join. It is
our opinion the
institution and the majority of the inmateswere unawareof what was about
to happen. If, in
fact, the inmateswho beganthe seriesof eventsknew what they were going to
do, it was not
well planned.Theymayhaveknowntheyweregoingto do someihirrg,
Uutnjto whatextent. It
is our opiniontheincidentgrewinto somethingtargeithanthe originafinmateshadintended.
AssociateWarden Donna Stiversand her staff are to be commendedfor their outstanding
performance.Ms. Stiverswas at the facility when it began. Her quick action
and directionto
her staffpreventedthe lossof life andseriousinjury. ShJandher staffimplementedandcarried
out the EmergencyPlan. The staffregainedconhoi of the situationwithin a few hours,knowing
theywereseriouslyoutnumbered.As a resultof their actionsandprofessionalism,
the facility ii