The Mississippi Legislature opens its 2020 session today facing new urgency to pump more money into the state's prison system. The wave of violence that left five inmates dead in less than a week could make prison funding a higher priority this year. As Governor Bryant prepares to leave office next week, he says it's clear that correctional officers need to be paid more to encourage people to take those jobs. The governor says the prisons are now under control after the gang fights last week. But he says they're difficult to manage even under the best of circumstances.
The last of two Mississippi prison escapees was caught in Tennessee in the same area where the other inmate was captured over the weekend. Dillion Williams was taken into custody yesterday afternoon in some woods in Rossville east of Memphis. He and David May escaped from Parchman Friday.
As expected, Mississippi Democratic Congressman Bennie Thompson made good on a promise to request that the U.S. Attorney General's office launch an investigation into the ongoing violence and safety crisis at Mississippi state prison facilities. This comes after recent uprisings and riots have resulted in the deaths of five inmates. In a statement released Monday, Thompson said his office sent a letter to the Department of Justice asking that a review be done of the Mississippi Department of Corrections to see if federal safety standards have been violated.
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