Prisons

The Illinois budget crisis could be driving inmates to drink, a prisons official said Tuesday.

Corey Knop told lawmakers he's seen more bootleg alcohol at the prison in Sumner than at any time in his nearly two decades with the Department of Corrections.

State of Illinois

A former Illinois correctional officer received a four-month prison sentence for choking, punching and kneeing a handcuffed prisoner in 2016.

A judge has given the green light to a class action lawsuit against Illinois’ prison healthcare system.

  A federal judge has approved the settlement in a lawsuit over the treatment of Illinois’ mentally ill prisoners.

Without admitting wrongdoing, Department of Corrections Director John Baldwin says his agency is building four new mental health units, hiring more staff, and changing its policies on solitary confinement.

People
Illinois Information Service

A change in state policy aims to help more offenders get a job when they get out of prison.

A new joint investigation finds that more than 80 percent of federal inmates in so-called solitary confinement are actually forced to share a cell with another, often violent, inmate. Marshall Project reporter Christie Thompson and NPR’s Joe Shapiro speak to Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd about the conditions and the sometimes lethal repercussions.

Illinois could finally reckon with its dramatically overcrowded prisons in 2016.

The entire system is at 146 percent of the capacity it was designed to hold, but that number doesn’t tell the whole story. Some individual prisons — such as East Moline, Illinois River and Lincoln — are above 200 percent of the rated capacity.

Prison Overcrowding
WJBC

New state data show that the number of people incarcerated in Illinois prisons has fallen in recent years but facilities still remain overcrowded.

Illinois prisons are crowded - handling about 17,000 more inmates then they were built for. Now a watchdog group says the state is at a turning point - and needs leadership from whoever is sworn in as governor in January.

Two federal judges may visit a southern Illinois prison as they work on a class-action lawsuit that inmates brought about overcrowding, according to court documents.

IDOC

State Corrections officials say a prisoner who assaulted  a guard at the Shawnee Correctional Center in Vienna has been transferred to a maximum-security facility.

State of Illinois

A prisoner involved in a weekend altercation with guards at the Pinckneyville Correctional Center is a former Tamms Supermax inmate.

Reopen Tamms Correctional Ceneter

A Union County woman is leading the charge to convince state leaders to reopen the Tamms Correctional Center.

IDOC

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn insists the state prison system is NOT overcrowded.

Five Illinois prisons have been locked down in the past week because of a spike in violence.

Prison Overcrowding
WJBC

The John Howard Association, a prison watchdog group, says too few inmates at Pontiac Correctional Center qualify for programs meant to prepare them to return to society.

Prison Overcrowding
WJBC

The Illinois Department of Corrections has freed 120 inmates as part of a new early-release program. But the director of the department says letting more inmates out is not the answer to overcrowding in prisons.

Illinois prisons are really crowded. They've got a rated capacity of about 34,000 inmates, but have routinely been housing more than 49,000.  That's in part because of a scandal tied to an early-release program a few years ago.  Now there's a new program in which inmates can earn time off their sentences based on their behavior and potential for rehabilitation.

John Howard Association

An Illinois prison watchdog group says conditions are tense at Menard Correctional Center, in southern Illinois.

IDOC

For the third time in as many months, the death of a Menard prison inmate has resulted in a murder charge.

Randolph County State's Attorney Jeremy Walker says he's filed a murder charge against 38-year-old ex-Menard inmate Frank Wings.  Walker says Wings is accused of strangling William Crowder on March 26 in their cell in the maximum-security lockup's segregation unit.

IDOC

The Randolph County coroner has ruled another inmate death as a murder at the Menard maximum-security prison in Chester.

Coroner Randy Dudenbostel says 35-year-old William Crowder died March 26 from ``manual strangulation.'' The coroner classified the death as a homicide.  State's Attorney Jeremy Walker was not immediately available to comment on criminal charges.        

IDOC

A 23-year-old Menard Correctional Center inmate has been charged with murder in the death of his cell mate.

Randolph County State's Attorney Jeremy Walker says Donald Hazzard is accused of beating 64-year-old Yusuf Abuzir in their cell Jan. 25.  Abuzir died in the prison infirmary on Feb. 25.   Walker says Hazzard will be held in the Randolph County Jail on a $750,000 bond after he's released from Menard.

IDOC

Illinois prisons at Pontiac, Sheridan and Stateville have more guards on rotation. The Departments of Corrections says most of the employees who had been working at the now closed Dwight correctional center started new jobs Monday.

IDOC

The warden at the maximum-security prison in Pontiac says there have been no problems or violent incidents with inmates shipped in from the now-closed Tamms Correctional Center.

Illinois Prisons: Healthcare

Mar 27, 2013

Illinois taxpayers are paying a private healthcare company more than $1.3 billion over ten years to provide care for inmates in prisons.

IDOC

The Associated Press has learned that authorities are calling the death of Menard Correctional Center inmate Tuesday night ``suspicious.''

Illinois Prisons: Crowding

Mar 26, 2013

The agency that runs Illinois prisons has more inmates than it has room for.

Illinois Prisons: Going Home

Mar 25, 2013
Prison Overcrowding
WJBC

Illinois Public Radio’s Robert Wildeboer has been reporting for months about Illinois prisons, both from the inside and the outside.

Inmates at the Shawnee Correctional Center and five other state prisons will be bunking in gyms in the coming weeks as part of the state’s ongoing struggle with overcrowding.

According to a letter Thursday from the Department of Corrections to the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees union the state will be setting up temporary bed space at the prisons in Vienna, Vandalia, Centralia, Danville, Canton and Hillsboro. Corrections spokeswoman Stacey Solano says the gymnasiums at the six prisons will be used temporarily for minimum security inmates.

IDOC

The Randolph County States Attorney says he is treating the Jan. 31 death of a southern Illinois prison inmate as a murder investigation.

IDOC

Two guards and a chaplain have been released from a hospital after being hurt at Menard penitentiary during an attack Tuesday.

Pages