Inmates injured by falls, fights during power outage at Indiana jail

U.S. & World

INDIANAPOLIS (WXIN) — A power outage Monday morning at a county jail in downtown Indianapolis left several inmates injured.

Officials said the power went out at 3:38 a.m. at the Marion County Jail II. They said some inmates fell in the dark, and others were hurt by fighting in the darkness.

The outage happened as Indianapolis Power & Light crews were doing work in the area.

“From our understanding, IPL was tracking down problems in their line and they needed to disconnect the line to deal with the ice,” said Marion County Sheriff Kerry J. Forestal. “In doing so, it shut the power off. The generator failed to come back on.”

Forestal said the generators were just tested on Friday.

He said the darkness inside the jail lasted “about 10 minutes” and at no time was the perimeter breached. IPL said the power was restored within 30-45 minutes.

Eight inmates were transported to the hospital for minor injuries, but none are believed to be critical or life-threatening. Three other inmates were treated by the jail’s medical staff for less serious injuries.

“Some broken bones we believe occurred during a fall when they were moving around in the dark,” said Forestal. “Some soft tissue injuries we believe occurred because of fighting amongst some inmates themselves.”

No weapons were found during a search of the jail.

The city said all inmates have been accounted for, and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office will investigate the incident.

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