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Losing control

 

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Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

The one bad side effect of my job I always expect the worst in people,family gatherings to parties…I always worry about losing control on the job that I led it affect of the job;my back to the wall to near exits…. We got a Tought job,we never no when the crap will the fan but we gotta be ready……. Be safe guys.

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

I recall an inmate in (special housing) that decided to goof with the smoke detector. He somehow broke the seal by hitting it with his gym shoes.
Unfortunately for him when the sprinkler head went off it was the first time ever that it was used (new part of the jail) so he was doused in oil then tons of water before we could get the valve shutoff. The others in the unit got a free shower until the water was stopped. He was screaming bloody murder to get out of the cell. I wonder why.

 
Remle riflepg irish assassin 286 posts

Where I’m at now we had an officer get bombed by an inmate in seg. Now the way I’m used to dealing with this is offer the inmate one chance to cuff up, if not then use the OC. Still don’t work then its time to get the goons. Yes its a big deal but it was common occurance. The way it was handled here just kinda made me scratch my head and wonder wtf. I won’t go into detail but Commander lets just say if this happened at our old place there would be some brass hanging with the cowards. Yes, I realize I went from a level 4 facility to a level 1/2. But it’s kind of shocking sometimes to see how the difference affects the decision makers.

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

Exactly the reason we finally convinced the facility to start a CERT team. You really need them when things go downhill. County jails need to have CERT teams ready just like the state facilities.

 
Male user commander 277 posts

Agree, Irish. Of course I am biased. I never worked anywhere but SOCF. I know on a number of occaisions as a Department Head, I sat in on a large number of meetings and was told about a certain meeting up north from the boss and was surprised at how little happened at other prisons. Not to diminish the Officers who work at other prisons. They are all dangerous. But, I remember on one occaision, I was told about a Warden who was explaining about a stabbing they had and they locked the prison down for 3 days. Our Warden, Ed, chuckled and said we had a stabbing and 3 fights the other day during chow. We put up a few wet floor signs and continued running chow. So for those from SOCF, that is where that saying came from. It is true. I remember probably a half dozen times we locked the prison down during my 26 years plus, with the exception of the riot. One was when the teacher was murdered. A few months before I retired, the heartless felons and bloods were fighting everyday, and I mean 7 or 8 fights on 1st and again on 2nd shift with as many as 10 fighting at a time. Warden came in after day 2 and said lock it down and we ran chow one range at a time on each side then after they locked up, ran again until all were finished. No movement and we had the SRT dressed out, everyone carrying MK-9, had the MK-46’s at the IDR and at CC-3 in hand, also had the grenades within reach. Went on for about 3 or 4 days.

 
Remle riflepg irish assassin 286 posts

I always tried to make it a point to try not to work to close to the “I’m Scared” group to much. Mainly because I didn’t like the idea of my inital response to go running the other way. I’ll back up anyone, even the cowards because thats what we do, but god help someone who runs away from a staff member in trouble. Now I’m not the biggest, baddest dog in the yard but I’ll never let anyone go alone. If someone can’t hack it in that way then they should quit before they cause someone to get hurt. We all carry a certain amount of fear with us in this job, but if it controls you then this job is not where you should be.

I’m on top of my game as you say commander only because of the staff I started my career with. Lots of good people all over Ohio but I really do think time spent working SOCF is worth double of just about anywhere else in the state. Just because it forces you to learn faster than the usual prison setting from the more frequent occurances of just about everything from fights to suicides. Now that I’ve transfered closer to home to a lower security facility I can see exactly how crazy that place really was. Always thankful for the great people and lessons I got to start this job with.

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

Thanks Jamestown,Commander,,you both know it can be difficult at times,you can’t pre-plan for everything,never no when the proverbial crap will hit the fan….just two days ago I was coming in to the unit from working the tower first half;10-2.My supervisor told me he has a situation going on in one of the unit.Inmate got written up for being out of his bunk at 1245am…20 minutes later the officer coming back from his meal break wrote him up again for the same violation… Expecting the worst…..I when in thinking fight or lockout ..what I got,,,I couldn’t stop laughing,,,the inmate told me he didn’t know he was breaking any rules,,even thu he was caught a second time.Remainded the rest of them as far as rules "you crap on us we will crap on you…the rules said at 10 u all are in your bunks no movements except bathroom ..,,, he apology to the officer….,WOW

 
Male user commander 277 posts

Outstanding info guys. I had a thing I did when walking the corridors. I would see an inmate and inmagine him going out to lunch. I would then react in my mind as such: If he turns this way, I do this, if he throws a punch, I do this. As you guys have said pre-planning doesn’t always work but, if you practice scenarios in your head, you will be surprised how quickly, calmly and efficiently you do react.

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

That’s so true Canus in comparing firefighting to corrections. I have been a firefighter for over 30 years.One of the things we teach new probees is how to size-up a scene and more importantly safety first. The last thing a firefighter or EMT needs to do is be killed because the touched live electric lines rushing to help someone. In corrections we need to survey the scene before we start jumping into it. For example we had an inmate housed by himself who looked like he was having a seizure. At that time I was an EMT. I called for backup, then when four officers arrived we went into the cell. I looked at him and immediately knew he was faking a grand mal seizure. So to make sure I took an ammonia tablet broke it under his nose and he almost stood up straight, obviously a person having a grand mal cannot do that. The MOST important thing is your safety, always. Have a safe shift.

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

True Jamestown ,you can pre-plan everything that might go wrong.I often think my job could be compare to a firefighter.Firefighters go to the fire to stop it while others run from it.We co’s are sort of the same"We go to the fight,emergency ,or riot,have being on the first two….Is or job to react no run away…..I will be honest is not easy but if we don’t we loose control..

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

All of us have worked with COs who can and cannot operate a floor, tier or dorm. I’m not sure if it’s worse to have a CO who calls for the Sgt every ten minutes or the CO who never calls for the Sgt even when the floor is on fire scared to make trouble. I had two fights in two different blocks on the same floor, called for backup with 12 of us fighting hand to hand in both blocks at the same time. I saw an inmate who was 6 ft tall and about 300 pounds pick up a small inmate, bend him in half then stick the inmate in a slop sink. The reason? The small inmate stole his ice cream bar. So in essence COs need to know what to do when things on the floor, tier or block go downhill. You can’t pre-plan for everything.

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

After 8 years in.the only thing I worry about is panic attacks,“I used to have these nightmares where I would freeze in a situation”,how I dealt with it is,Saying my prayer “They I should walk thru the valley of the shadow of death”..,,before I come into the job….it helps,I would survey first and enter the dorm telling the officer to stay sharp.Turn the lights if I tell you,3rd shift right now….
I seing a few who would just freeze,,,,Go get me inmate so and so .i got to serve him his charges.."He would reply “you wrote him up,you do it” ….I would check the board.and tell the pathetic excuse for a….you wait by the gate".,,I wake him up,if the inmate was angry..I just tell him I can arrange for him to be transfer to another prison while ….just pathetic.

 
Riot helmet Mick 307 posts

Unfortunately cowardice is just a prevalent in this job. I don’t know how many times I have seen both Officers, Supervisors and Management head in the opposite direction of trouble.

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

I had an inmate on the block that was screaming, banging on the wall, throwing everything into the catwalk and the supervisor ignored me after several attempts to get him to come and see what the inmate was doing. Essentially the supervisor hid in his office. This continued until my relief came at 2:50pm. He called his supervisor and then a whole team of 20 COs from both shifts responded. Pathetic.

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

I often though how I needed to handle trouble inmates because of how the new supervisors and administrators would react,often if it was 8.30 pm,weekend,and lockout was at 9pm they didn’t want to be trouble sending officers to pick up am inmate because he refused to go get his medication at the mandatory time,all movements on the prison where 15 minutes,miss it Tought,but the last few years before I transfered they bend over to please em….Me.you don’t want to follow rules them I don’t want you on my unit…..

 
Male user commander 277 posts

I agree DT. After our riot in 1993, the changes were good for awhile and then people forgot about it. I will never forget about it. My Officers were always instructed by me to do whatever it takes within logic, to control or subdue an unruly inmate and I would always have their back. Some people always go to the extremes. Small percentage. They ruin it for those of us who do our jobs and ensure our prison is safe. If ya know what I mean. Take care DT.

 
Isr DT Instructor 108 posts

Listen, what it all comes down to is the inmates are now running the asylums. You have frontline staff that are afraid to use for or enforce rules and regs for fear of repercussions from administrations. Inmates do not respect staff and they know they can do whatever they want to. In Ohio we have rehabilitation in our title but what if they were never habilitated in the first place? If it’s the second or even third generation of “stae babies” they have no clue of what “normal” is!?!?!

There has to be a limit or a cut off for the swing to the left in corrections, has to be. I just hope no staff are injured in the riot/disturbance that will have to occur to change he various administrations minds. My personal opinion is there has to be cause and effect. The inmate screws up and pays for it, otherwise they will never change their ways.

 
Male user commander 277 posts

The worst ones cover theirselves and cell in feces and then throw it at you when you come thru the cell door. WOW that is nasty.

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

You just never know. Some inmates are bravo when they are behind the bars but when you go in on them melt like butter. The ones to watch will grease themselves up then take a defensive stance.

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

Irish is good.i am just a rookie with 8 years in.Only being on 6 ,what the liberals call cell to cell transfer,Anytime we go into a cell we just don’t know what to expect…….F the liberals…..

 
Correction officer jamestown0509 313 posts

Use of force continuum is excellent for reports. We base that on NY Penal Law 35.00 which is taught every year to all officers. One thing we always taught officers was when using OC all you have to do is say, “you are about to be sprayed” just before spraying them…well we did give a verbal warning…another suggestion is to video record when you do any cell extraction for evidence, besides it is a reminder for your officers to act professionally which they should be doing anyway.

 
Male user commander 277 posts

Very good Irish. You are on top of your game. We had to follow the response to resistance continum at work. When able to we had to use a Preclusion prior to the Use of Force. Then we had to be able to justify the other 3 of the 4 elements of the Response to Resistance. Opportunity, Jeopardy and Ability. I was a Use of Force Chairman on one of the investigation committees. I would always tell the Officers, when writing your report, explain how you had no other alternative than to use force. Doing that and that alone (minus you screwing up on video), will satisfy any UOF committee investigating the incident.

 
Remle riflepg irish assassin 286 posts

We have to write a report anytime this situation happens so using the OC is no big deal for us there. Always give them a verbal warning in this situation first, it helps to cover your own ass. “Well the inmate had a chance to give up before he got gassed and we went in.”

 
Male user Canusxiii 116 posts

Me,grab the legs ,and a gut check…..But the OC is better,only problem every time we used OC we go to write a report so the gut check modified,gotta tell them "you move,you got trouble them you gut check him or take em down,I prefer the OC like you said…

 
Remle riflepg irish assassin 286 posts

Spray hanging inmate with OC before opening cell door. SMART OFFICER trick

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