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Inmate assaults Tenn. corrections sergeant with broken piece of glass

The inmate broke the screen glass of the video visitation kiosk located inside an isolation unit and used the glass to assault the CO

By Sarah Roebuck

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — A correctional sergeant was assaulted while attempting to move an inmate from an isolation unit, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.

The assault happened on April 17 when an inmate, identified as Nicholas Pillows, broke the screen glass of the video visitation kiosk located inside the isolation unit. The inmate had prepared to use the broken glass as a weapon, the sheriff’s office said.

As corrections deputies approached the unit to move the inmate, he began to lash out and assaulted Corrections Sergeant Stephen Roberts with a piece of glass several times before being subdued, according to the sheriff’s office.

“The injuries Sergeant Roberts sustained in this altercation represent the ever-present challenges and serious dangers our corrections services personnel face on a daily basis while performing their duties. Weapons can be made or forged from literally anything, including in this particular incident, a piece of broken computer screen from a video visitation unit. These dangerous weapons can cause serious injuries or even death to our personnel. We are fortunate Sergeant Roberts was not more seriously injured in this incident. I am proud of the hard work and service our corrections deputies provide this county and its citizens each and every day,” Sheriff Austin Garrett said in a statement.

Roberts suffered two lacerations to his head. He was treated at a hospital for his injuries and released.

The inmate is facing additional charges related to the incident, the sheriff’s office said.

How can corrections officers spot makeshift weapons? In the video below, explore expert advice on identifying and preventing the use of makeshift weapons in jails. Understand the signs and the inventive methods inmates use to create these dangerous items.