The Illinois Department of Corrections is denying reports that inmate-on-staff attacks are at a ten-year-high. Republican State Senator Dave Luechtefeld of Okawville sent out a news release saying the numbers were up, but a spokesperson for the DOC says the way the incidents are documented might lead people to believe there are more attacks.
DOC Spokesman Tom Shaer says they didn’t include the minor behavior violations as assaults ten years ago. But, he says their strategy is working to drive down serious assaults on both staff and inmates. He says serious assaults on staff were down 35-percent in FY 13 compared to FY 12, and serious attacks on other inmates were down 51-percent. According to Luechtefeld’s count, there were about 102 more staff assaults during the same time period. He attributes the increase to Governor Quinn’s plan to close Tamms and Dwight prisons.