NEW CASTLE, Ind. – Extra law enforcement officers were called to the Henry County Jail after officials say some inmates tried to start a fire.
Henry County Sheriff Rick McCorkle says those inmates used toilet paper, writing materials and even part of their uniforms to start a fire in the “ball kit” of their cell doors, attempting to blow the rubber tubing in the system and gain access to the inside “day area” of the jail.
“In the past they’ve been able to build a small fire in the bulkhead and circumvent that system, weakening that tubing and then when they would hit the air for the doors it would blow that line, so they had free access to their day area all the time,” Sheriff McCorkle said.
McCorkle says they’ve been in the process of exchanging rubber for copper in the system to prevent the issue from happening. He says they were just about to have the project finished tomorrow — that’s why some inmates made another attempt overnight.
“What we now know is, that they can’t circumvent those doors because tonight, they tried to build a fire big enough to circumvent the door, blow the tubing, so they could get back out in their day area and do what they wanted to do — those doors held and the fire got out of control,” Sheriff McCorkle said.
Officials had to move 133 inmates outside to the recreation area while they got the fire under control inside. Officials say there wasn’t a threat of someone escaping the jail property itself.
The Henry County Sheriff’s Office worked with multiple agencies to keep everything under control, including New Castle Police and Indiana State police.
No one was hurt.
Inmates tried to build a fire big enough to circumvent the door, but the doors held firm and the fire got out of hand.
The sheriff says extra law enforcement officers from the Henry County Sheriff’s Department, New Castle Police Department and State Police were called in to help with inmate control while the situation inside the jail was resolved.
No injuries have been reported at this point.