Poor prison conditions for employees

Published: Aug. 2, 2022 at 8:36 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - A former correctional officer and an inmate advocate are speaking out after a prison guard was killed by an inmate earlier this week in Holdenville.

Davis Correctional Facility Officer Alan Jay Hershberg was attacked by inmate Gregory Thompson on Sunday morning. Officials said Thompson attacked Hershberg from behind using a homemade weapon, and he is currently serving a life sentence for first-degree murder.

“The policy book says it should be two guards per unit, this man was on a unit by himself. And I’ll do like to say first. I do send prayers to the family for that incident, but the problem is our prisons are very short staff right now,” Shelton said.

Lynch said in his two years as a correctional officer they never completed a shake-down search, looking for weapons or contraband. Also, those very violent inmates are not kept in Maximum security, and they are supposed to be.

“You had some of the worst individuals accessible of violence out like a normal medium-security inmate had access to the guard’s crazy ideas to make weapons all the time and the amount of drugs that flow into these yards is unacceptable,” Lynch said.

Lynch said he was also a victim of an assault by an inmate.

“He pulled me into the cell by the food tray slot and sliced my hand with the handcuffs that I was trying to remove. And I was sent to the hospital, and it checked out and it was nothing, then I was sent back to work,” Lynch said.

Lynch said even with the constant danger he faced every day, he loved his job as a correctional officer, because he genuinely wanted to help rehabilitate people.

“I thought I was making a difference in some inmates’ lives, just making headway with some. Some that I still think about to this day, and if you’re seeing this, I still worry about you and I still think about you and you will always be in my prayers,” Lynch said.

Copyright 2022 KSWO. All rights reserved.