Audio – Senator Keith Ingram Reporting News From 91st General Assembly
September 6th, 2018 • News

September 6, 2108

  • Lawmakers have launched an investigation into a series of suspicious deaths inside the walls of state prisons. Five inmates died over a period of only four days at the Varner Unit
  • The State Police have looked into the deaths, and although nothing certain has been determined it is widely suspected that the inmates died from an overdose of K-2. That is a form of synthetic marijuana laced with chemicals such as bug spray and nail polish remover.
  • Visits from family and friends are basically prohibited for most inmates at Varner. prison officials told a legislative committee that this year nine prison employees have been terminated for drug trafficking.
  • Last year 13 Arkansas inmates died from an overdose of K-2. So far this year, there have been six fatal overdoses. The number of confiscations of K-2 is actually down compared to last year, according to prison officials.
  • The Arkansas prison system is not the only one experiencing problems of inmates dying from drug overdoses. Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania have had to lock down units and take added security measures to stop the flow of contraband into prisons.
  • Those measures include using drug-sniffing dogs, closer inspection of mail and correspondence and tighter searches of visitors.
  • When inmates obtain cell phones, it facilitates the delivery of all other types of contraband. That’s why many prison officials want the authority to jam cell phone signals on prison property.
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