The Newton Correctional Facility was placed under lockdown this morning after several fights between inmates broke out in the prison's recreation yard.
Department of Corrections spokesperson Fred Scaletta said that prison guards used chemical agents to separate the approximate 15 inmates involved in the physical altercations in the prison yard at about 10 a.m. today. Those inmates involved were placed in segregation status as the investigation into the incident continues. Non-involved inmates were returned to their cells.
"All available staff responded in a very professional and effective manner to separate, control and restrain the approximate inmates involved," Scaletta said in a statement issued in regard to the matter. "Other than a few staff exposed to chemical agents and one staff with a few arm scrapes during a take down to apply restraints, there were no staff injuries."
He also said there were no serious inmate reported or observed injuries due to immediate staff response.
Scaletta said the Newton Correctional Facility has now transitioned from a lockdown to a restricted movement status. Most inmates are under cell restriction except for limited movement for meals and medical appointments. All visits at the medium-security prison were cancelled today but are expected to resume on Saturday.
The Minimum Security Correctional Release Center adjacent to the prison was not impacted by today's lockdown.
Scaletta said that due to the ongoing investigation into the matter, no further information would be made available at this time.