State prisons resume normal operations

Local

Pennsylvania’s state prisons have resumed normal operations following a 12-day lockdown to address a series of incidents were staff were exposed to synthetic drugs.

The Department of Corrections said toxicology results confirmed the presence of synthetic cannabinoid in multiple instances of staff exposure.

Lab tests also confirmed inmate overdoses were linked to synthetic cannabinoids and other illegal substances.

More than 50 employees and 33 inmates reported illnesses and were taken to outside hospitals between May 31 and Sept. 1.

The Corrections Department has since eliminated mail processing at prisons and is using a third-party vendor to process non-legal inmate mail.

Prisons have also expanded the use of body scanners and drone detection software, and staff has been increased in all visiting rooms.

Visitors caught smuggling drugs into the prisons face indefinite or even lifetime bans.

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