Authorities are on the scene of an apparent uprising at Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore.
It’s unclear what time the unrest started. Repeated efforts to reach prison officials for comment were unsuccessful. Correctional officers who answered the phone said they were too busy to talk. The warden at Holman is Carter Davenport.
Atmore police said they were “not at liberty to discuss” the situation, and the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office in Alabama said there was a “riot” and the inmates were “contained” but no additional information was immediately available.
Alabama State Troopers spokesman Steve Jarrett confirmed this morning trooper personnel was sent to assist, but said all other information would have to come from the Department of Corrections.
The riot reportedly began as a fight between two inmates that escalated into a guard being stabbed nine times and the stabbing of Warden Davenport, sources tell NorthEscambia.com.
The injuries to the guard and the warden were said to be non-life threatening.
The Alabama Department of Corrections Emergency Response Team (CERT) entered the facility about 5:00 a.m. and brought the situation under control in short period of time, and the prison remains under lockdown, sources said.
Photos and video of the reported uprising have surfaced on social media. The images show fires at the prison, and inmates with their faces covered. Inmates are reporting that the “gates are rolled up” and beds have been overturned.
One man posted this on Facebook: “Attention: We need yall help here at Holman Correction Facility Prison. The police down here beating on and jus treating us any kind way. We down here fighting for are lifes. Please contact the News, Newspaper, Radio station. NCAAP. Help please.”
Zannice Houston posted this on her Facebook page: “Please pray for my son in Holman Prison. A riot lord Jesus.”
Houston told AL.com that her son, Jamario J.E. Houston, called via collect call two hours ago and said that prisoners have built a wall, and they are waiting for more authorities to come to the prison. “Yes, right now it’s not under control, Lord Jesus,” Houston said. She said she hasn’t heard from her son since then.
Another woman posted this: “I know its late. But i need help from my family and friends especially from my Sister and Brothers in Christ. I need Prayers to go up for Holman Prison the inmates the guard everyone down there in that facility. No weapon formed against them shall prosper. Thank You!!!!!!”
A video posted to Facebook (warning: graphic language) which claims to be from inside the prison shows inmates tending a fire in a dorm area.
The William C. Holman Correctional Facility was constructed in 1968 and 1969. The facility was officially open in December, 1969, at a cost of five million dollars. The first prisoner was received on December 15, 1969.
Holman Correctional Facility houses Death Row inmates and is the only facility in the state that carries out executions. Additional housing of Death Row inmates is located at the William C. Donaldson Correctional Facility in Jefferson County.
The present population of Holman consists of minimum through closed custody inmates, including life without parole and Death Row inmates, according to the Department of Corrections website. The living quarters have a total capacity of 998 available beds. There are 630 population beds with Housing Units A-D having a capacity of 114 each and Housing Unit E with a capacity of 174. There are 7 infirmary beds. There are 200 segregation unit beds and Death Row has a capacity of 194 for a total of 1031 beds.
Holman is located ten miles north of Atmore, Alabama, just east of Highway 21 on Ross Road. The perimeter of the security compound is surrounded by two fences. The inner fence is taut wire fence with the outer fence being chain link. The compound has six towers and two perimeter vehicles, which operate twenty four hours a day. During the hours of darkness, the perimeter is fully lighted, according to the website.
Riot at Holman Correctional Fac #FREEMEANDALLMYNIGGAZ #FREEALABAMA
Posted by PA Brazeal on Friday, March 11, 2016