Violence erupts at Swanson Correctional Center

Six inmates escaped, and two guards were attacked. All inmates are back in custody.
Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 7:00 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Violence continues to erupt at Swanson Correctional Center in Monroe. A guard is recovering after being attacked, and six juvenile inmates are back in custody after escaping the facility.

Swanson Correctional Center is no stranger to crime. In 2020, more than ten people escaped the facility. On the night of May 9, 2021, two guards were attacked, and one required medical attention. Monroe Police says following the attack, inmates gained access to the control center, which allowed others to roam free. Hours later, Monroe Police says six inmates got out of the housing unit and escaped but were captured soon after.

State Representative Pat Moore and Ouachita Parish Police Juror Lonnie Hudson are concerned about the public’s safety.

“You’re going to have to do more to make sure that the people, especially the elderly, and our most vulnerable people, our children, are safe and that they feel safe,” Moore said.

“Their safety is our number one concern,” Hudson said. “We have the seniors in the community. We have children in the community. We want them to get this under control where no one has to be afraid to step outside their porch or kids playing in the neighborhood.”

Moore says the state already has a plan to fix many of the problems with the facility. She says the planning phase is underway to build a new $24 million facility. Moore says it includes security improvements.

“In addition to the new facility, which can’t happen right away that’s long term. I need to know what the short terms are, and we need to inform the community so they can have a sense of peace and feel safe. Not just feel safe, but be safe,” Moore said.

According to arrest records, one of the escapees was 18-year-old Isaiah Edwards.

Video surveillance shows him escaping his dorm by entering the ceiling and gaining entry outside. Arrest records say he climbed a security fence and ran with five other inmates.

He is charged with simple escape and theft of a motor vehicle. The names of the other inmates were not released because they are juveniles.

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