Corrections officer assaulted

Union: Attack could have been prevented

BALTIMORE - On the same day alleged BGF gang leader Tavon White pleaded guilty to federal charges of orchestrating an elaborate drug and cellphone ring from inside the city detention center, the union for correctional officers in the state says gang organization and violence nearly cost a guard's life in Cumberland, and it could have been prevented.

"The department knew this was going to happen, they knew there was going to be an assault.  They had intel...the information is right here," said AFSCME President Patrick Moran.

Moran was holding up a letter written by an inmate warning the staff at North Branch Corrections Institution in Cumberland to remove two of its guards from his tier or his people would take matters into their own hands.

The letter ends by warning bodily harm will be inflicted ASAP.

The union says nothing was done and the inmate made good on the threat.

"He was stabbed a number of times, in the neck and the head.  That was the intention, made to do murder this family man, this member of a community and state employee.  That is unacceptable," Moran said.

The Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services responded in a statement today saying "The preliminary investigation revealed that a threat against the injured officer was made and that the employee may not have been notified as required by the policy.  Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken if staff are found to have violated the notification policy."

But AFSCME wants more, it wants the leadership of the North Branch Correctional Institution to step down before more guards get hurt...or even killed.

"They didn't take the necessary steps in order to have officers come in and went home in one piece.  The result? What do we have? Some three officers yesterday that were assaulted, one who was stabbed severely in the head and neck," said Moran.

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