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Fight at state prison in Springfield leads to injuries of staff, inmates

Area first responders are continuing to handle unrest that began Tuesday evening at the Mike Durfee State Prison in Springfield.

The South Dakota Department of Corrections (DOC) confirmed to The Dakota Scout Wednesday morning that guards at the facility were involved in breaking up a fight amongst inmates Tuesday night.

Alex Bochman, the editor of the Springfield Times newspaper, reported that officers with the Bon Homme County Sheriff’s Office were also present at the prison at about 10 PM Tuesday in support of prison staff. Bochman said that she could hear inmates shouting from inside the prison, but that they were not chanting anything in particular. The Bon Homme County Sheriff did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Things appeared to calm down at the prison at about 3 AM, but the situation appears to still be unsettled, Bochman said.

“(Ambulance) Transports started again this morning,” Bochman explained. “There is a law enforcement presence here again too.”

The Department of Corrections confirmed in a statement that several were injured as a result of the fight. They had been transferred to area hospitals by ambulance.

“Some DOC staff members suffered minor injuries while acting quickly to restore order.” a spokesman with the department said. “There were no assaults on staff, no loss of facility operations, and no damage to property.”

Six inmates were injured, though none were life threatening according to the DOC.

Earlier this year, several days of riots at the men’s correctional facility in Sioux Falls allegedly over access to electronic tablets resulted in 11 inmates being indicted on felony charges by the Attorney General’s office. Those cases are ongoing.

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