Sergeant, deputy assaulted inside Denver’s detention center and hospitalized2 min read
A Denver Sheriff’s sergeant and a deputy injured and hospitalized following inmate assaults in Denver’s Downtown Detention Center this week have been released and are recovering.
Denver Sheriff Elias Diggins on Friday told the Denver Post that the attacks reflect the increasingly difficult work inside jails and prisons. And city officials will be working to hire more deputies, and retain current employees, by offering higher pay and bonuses, Diggins said, declaring increased staffing to reach a budgeted level of 859 workers “the highest priority for us.”
At present, the sheriff’s department has 585 employees, 68% of the number of budgeted employees.
“It is tough work. It has always been tough work,” Diggins said, referring to evolving conditions inside the detention center and Denver County Jail.
“The environment has changed. We have more folks who have mental health conditions and more folks who have addictions to substances. ….. It is absolutely a tough environment to be in,” he said.
“We are happy our deputies are recovering from those incidents.”
On Tuesday morning, a deputy working near the inmate housing cells was assaulted and sustained injuries, officials confirmed. The deputy was taken to the Denver Health Medical Center for treatment.
On Wednesday night, a sergeant working in the detention center was assaulted, suffering injuries that required treatment at the medical center.
No further information was released, and Denver police are investigating the circumstances around those assaults.
Sheriff’s department staffing shortages have led to requirements that employees work extra hours. Diggins referred to a policy of spreading that extra burden by requiring all employees to work overtime hours.
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