One dead following riot at Arizona State Prison

Riot at the Arizona State Prison near San Luis Ariz.

SAN LUIS, Ariz. - UPDATE (1:41 P.M.)

According to the Arizona Department of Corrections, an inmate passed away following the riot reported at the Arizona State Prison Thursday night.

Twenty-six inmates were transported to the hospital and treated for minor and/or non-life threatening 1:injuries. Fifteen have since been released and returned to the complex.

 Inmate Adam J. Coppa, 32,  sustained fatal injuries during the disturbance. His death will be investigated in consultation with the county medical examiner’s office.


Eleven employees sustained minor and/or non-life threatening injuries and were seen at the hospital.


All have been released and 10 of the 11 employees have returned to work.Inmates involved in the disturbance are still secured and contained in fenced recreation enclosures on the yard. 


ADC personnel are continuing to conduct assessments at the unit today.


Inmate-inflicted damage occurred in housing and other buildings, including broken windows, sinks, toilets, fire alarms, locks, and flooding and ceiling damage due to broken water lines. Initial clean up and repairs are underway. Alternate housing is being assigned for a number of inmates.


ADC wishes to acknowledge the phenomenal response to this emergency situation by our dedicated department personnel from across the state, as well from other law enforcement and medical responders, including the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office, Yuma & San Luis Police Departments, FBI, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.


UPDATE (11:34 A.M.)

Agencies have confirmed that at least 16 people were taken to the hospital following Thursday night's riot at Arizona State Prison in San Luis. 

Yuma Fire Department assisted with medical units, according to Public Information Officer Mike Erfert. 

"We did transport 12 people to Yuma Regional Medical Center. However, other agencies were involved so we don't have an exact number," said Erfert.  

Efert could not confirm if those 12 people were inmates. Their condition has not been released at this time said Erfert. 

Rural Metro Fire Department also assisted along with other agencies. 

"During the mutual aid assignment with San Luis (Fire) at the prison we transported 4 patients," said Charly McMurdie. 

Public information officer, Alfonso Zavala added that many units were at the scene such as the Sheriff office special response team, Yuma county detention officers and Yuma county deputies. 


UPDATE (10:00 P.M.)

According to the Arizona Department of Corrections, a lockdown was set in place after inmates at the medium-custody Cheyenne Unit attacked prison personnel around 6:45pm.


Inmates threw rocks, set fires to mattresses and other property outside in the yard, and broke into the prison health unit. Approximately 600 inmates were involved.

All employees are safe and accounted for. ADC quick response and tactical teams from Yuma, Lewis and Tucson complexes worked to bring the disturbance under control around 9:00 p.m.

The inmates involved are contained and will remain on the fenced recreation yard tonight as ADC personnel conduct assessments.

The department will thoroughly investigate all facets of this disturbance and will seek additional criminal charges for any inmates involved in violent activity.

ADC appreciates the efforts of its personnel and that of the San Luis Police and Yuma County Sherriff's Departments who provided assistance in tonight's response.

We will provide additional information as developments warrant.


UPDATE (9:02 P.M.)

There are unconfirmed reports that it is a riot. We have contacted law enforcement and will keep you updated with any new information. 


According to Somerton Cocopah Fire Department, there has been a fire reported at the Arizona State Prison near San Luis, Ariz. Thursday evening.

Somerton Cocopah personnel is heading to the scene to assist with the fire.

Yuma Police Department is also assisting with the incident. 

We will keep you updated with any new information as it becomes available. 

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