CAPSICUM spray was used to control an “aggressive” riot involving 28 inmates at the Alexander Maconochie Centre on Wednesday (May 12) night.
The spray was used on “one occasion” when the incident broke out, a spokesman for the Justice and Community Safety Directorate (JACS) said.
It’s understood one inmate was injured, according to sources from inside the prison.
Frustrations over covid visiting restrictions are believed to have started the melee.
The restrictions are said to ban close contact between inmates and visitors, meaning detainees haven’t held their children for over a year.
Whilst JACS denies the event was linked to visiting arrangements, the directorate said detainees are allowed one in person social visit each week from immediate family and kinship members, with up to two adults and two children visiting per session.
“During the pandemic, ACT Corrective Services has put in various arrangements to facilitate social contact between detainees, their families and friends in a covid-safe manner,” the JACS spokesperson said.
“Visitors who are restricted from accessing social visits are still able to book an audio-visual visit with a detainee.
“ACT Corrective Services regularly review visits arrangements to maximise reasonable family and social contact.”
ACT Corrective Services are investigating the incident.