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UPDATE - More than 45 years added to prisoners' sentences following HMP Hewell disorder

Please see updates below in bold.

Twelve prisoners have had more then 45 years added to their existing sentences for taking part in a disorder incident at HMP Hewell.

It began around 5.15pm on Saturday 22 July, 2017 when a number of prisoners refused to return to their cells.

They were complaining to staff about their living conditions and a smoking ban that had recently been introduced when some became verbally aggressive. Shortly afterwards, a pool table and table tennis table were tipped over.

Prisoners then began to throw pool balls and chairs at staff causing them to leave the spur due to levels of violence being shown towards them.

While staff were away, cell doors and fire alarms were damaged, glass windows were smashed and door handles were broken off by prisoners.

Several prisoners removed water pipes from washing machines, which caused the wing to flood, and a total of 18 CCTV cameras were damaged. A number of staff were also injured during the disorder.

In total, tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage was caused and the spur where the incident took place had to be closed down resulting in prisoners being moved to other prisons across the country with only a small group remaining at the Redditch prison.

Eleven prisoners had previously pleaded guilty to participating in a prison mutiny and on Friday (1 February) ten of the group were sentenced to:

  • Calvin Gill, 23 - five years
  • Christopher Edwards, 32 - five years
  • Kieran Ballard, 29 - four years four months
  • Shay Taylor, 23 - five years
  • Sam Brown, 33 - three years two months
  • Liam Fields, 30 - three years four months
  • Thomas Rogers, 25 - three years four months
  • Rumia Delgado, 31 - three years four months
  • Keiko Marshall, 23 - three years four months  
  • Zac Dillon, 25 - five years four months

Grant Samed, 32, was sentenced today (Tuesday 12 February) to an indefinite hospital order.

Two defendants - Matthew Armstrong and Timothy Murphy - had initially denied being involved in the disorder but following a nine day trial at Birmingham Crown Court earlier this month, they were found guilty of participating in a prison mutiny.

Armstrong, 28, was also sentenced today (Tuesday 12 February) to six and a half years while Murphy, 24, will be sentenced on 1 April.

All the prisoners' sentences will run consecutively to their current jail terms.

Detective Constable Phil Shadwell led the investigation into the disorder. He said: "Violence inside a prison will not be tolerated and assaults on members of the emergency services or those working in the public sector will never be acceptable.

"I would like to thank everyone involved in this investigation. It has been a long and complex one, but their hard work has ensured a group of prisoners will be justly punished for their actions.

"I hope these sentences send a clear message that we will do everything we can to thoroughly investigate incidents such as these and in doing so, ensure offenders are brought to justice.

"I also hope those thinking of taking part in such a disorder in the future will think twice before doing so and can expect lengthy sentences should they decide to participate."

Prisons Minister Rory Stewart said: "The behaviour of these prisoners was completely unacceptable and has rightly been met with the full force of the law.

"I want to ensure prisons are places of stability where offenders can turn their lives around, and I thank our hardworking staff and colleagues at West Mercia Police who have helped to bring these men to justice."

Issued: 3.45pm, Friday 1 February, Laura Maltby, Corporate Communications

Updated: 12.30pm, Tuesday 12 February, Laura Maltby, Corporate Communications

Published 12/02/19