ICE detainees at the C. Carlos Carreiro Immigration Detention Center at the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office caused more than $25,000 worth of damage in a disturbance Friday evening.
According to a spokesperson with the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office, on Friday, a group of about 10 detainees in the B Wing of the detention center reported to medical personnel having multiple symptoms of COVID-19. The detainees refused to get tested for COVID-19, then when notified they were required to be tested because of reporting symptoms, rushed violently at Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson and corrections officers, barricaded themselves inside the facility, ripped washing machines and pipes off the wall, broke windows and trashed the entire unit.
Bristol County Sheriff’s Office corrections officers, special response team members and the K9 unit entered the facility and were attacked by the ICE detainees. The Bristol County security team was able to quickly gain control of the wing and restrain the detainees.
No Bristol County personnel were injured in the incident. Three ICE detainees were transported to the hospital; one for symptoms of a panic attack, one for a pre-existing medical condition and another for a medical incident after being removed from the ICE wing. All three are expected to be fine, according to the BCSO.
“This all started because a group of 10 detainees each reported having at least two symptoms of COVID-19,” Sheriff Hodgson said. “The health care professionals told them they had to be tested in the medical unit because of the reported symptoms. The detainees refused to go to the medical unit for testing. Our medical team alerted me, and I advised the detainees that for their health and the health of their fellow detainees and our staff, they needed to be tested at the medical unit. The detainees refused to comply, became combatant and ultimately put the lives of themselves and many Bristol County officers at risk with their reckless actions.
“I want to commend our medical professionals and our security team for their amazing work for quickly resolving the disturbance.”
The damage to the Ice B Wing is extensive. Detainees have been moved to single cells in the special housing unit pending disciplinary action, COVID-19 testing and criminal charges.
Carol Rose, executive director of the ACLU of Massachusetts, released the following statement in response to the reports.
“These reports are deeply disturbing. We are concerned for our clients, and everyone detained in the Bristol County House of Correction and ICE detention. Immigration detention has expanded at record levels under the Trump administration; now more than ever, we will not allow the increasingly horrific conditions of ICE detention to be normalized.”