Police & Fire

Prisoners hospitalized after setting fire to jail | magnoliareporter.com

By MIKE McNEILL | magnoliareporter.com

Prisoners set fire Monday night inside a pod at the Columbia County Justice and Detention Facility on Rawhide Road, Sheriff Leroy Martin said.

Martin said the fire was apparently set as part of an escape attempt, however, all of the 88 male and female prisoners at the facility are accounted for.

The fire was reported about 7:35 p.m. The Magnolia Fire Department sent two trucks and several personnel. The Magnolia Police Department and the Arkansas State Police also sent officers to assist Columbia County deputies.

The Columbia County Ambulance Service was also on the scene.

Martin estimated that about 10-15 prisoners complained of smoke or burns and were taken to the Magnolia Regional Medical Center for examinations. As of about 10:30 p.m., most had been returned to the jail.

About four or five prisoners were being temporarily transferred to the Lafayette County Jail in Lewisville while clean-up continues inside the pod that was set on fire.

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