Attorneys To Ask Judge To Lift Restrictions On Souza-Baranowski Inmates

SHIRLEY, Mass. (WBZ News Radio) — The attorneys representing clients at Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley will ask a judge on Monday to lift restrictions on inmates.

A group of inmates filed a lawsuit in recent weeks alleging civil rights and physical abuses by prison staff following an attack on a correctional officer last month.

Souza-Baranowski Prisoners Allege Abuses Following January Assault - Thumbnail Image

Souza-Baranowski Prisoners Allege Abuses Following January Assault

Inmates at the maximum security prison have allegedly not been allowed to keep paperwork in their cells, take time out of their cells to call their lawyers, or have contact visits with attorney, according to Rebecca Jacobstein, Director of Strategic Litigation with the Council for Public Services.

“It’s not necessary, it’s not legal, and it’s not good prison policy,” Jacobstein said. “Treating everyone, people who act properly and follow the rules, as if they didn’t follow the rules; it’s not the right way to run a facility. It’s not evidence-based practices; it’s a disaster.”

Earlier this week, however, Gov. Charlie Baker said he has “a lot of faith in the [Massachusetts Department of Corrections] and in the actions it’s taken to ensure that inmates and correctional officers at Souza are safe.”

The Massachusetts Department of Corrections told WBZ NewsRadio that they would not comment on pending litigation, but would “vigorously defend all actions and decisions necessary to maintain the safety of staff, inmates, and visitors at the Commonwealth's only maximum security prison."

WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports

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(Photo: State Rep. Mike Connolly)

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