Yard privileges and visitation at Salinas Valley State Prison are on temporary hiatus as investigators search for a .22-caliber Derringer one inmate claimed to have smuggled into the facility.
Lt. Darren Chamberlain confirmed Tuesday the “modified program” was instituted June 27 at the Soledad facility after an inmate told officers his family snuck him the gun during visitation.
Modified program, Chamberlain explained, eliminates yard and visitation privileges, and requires more controlled movements of inmates throughout the facility.
Three weeks of searching have turned up cold for a firearm, Chamberlain said.
“But when there’s an allegation that serious in nature, we have to take it very serious,” he said. “We have to protect the security of our staff, the inmates and the public.”
He imagined the modified program could continue for another week or longer as investigators conduct interviews of inmates.
SVSP houses both minimum and maximum security inmates. Just last week an inmate who slipped out of his handcuffs stabbed an officer three times in the head and neck with a manufactured weapon, authorities said.
Initially hospitalized, the officer was released later that day with superficial injuries, Chamberlain said Tuesday.