Inspection finds DC prison conditions OK for January 6 defendants

Christopher Worrell

This image shows part of the Department of Justice’s statement of facts in the complaint and arrest warrant for Christopher Worrell. In a case involving the accused Capitol riots on January 6, U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth held District Correctional Director and Prison Officer in contempt of court on October 13 and asked the Department of Justice to investigate whether the inmates’ civil rights were abused . Lamberth had summoned prison officials as part of the criminal case for Worrell, a member of the Proud Boys, who has been charged with the January 6 attack. Capitol. He has been accused of attacking police officers with a pepper spray gel, and prosecutors have claimed he traveled to Washington and coordinated with the Proud Boys before the siege. (AP Photo / Jon Elswick)

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. Marshals Service said Tuesday that suspects detained in connection with the Capitol uprising on Jan. 6 do not need to be removed from the District of Columbia prison complex despite their complaints about the conditions there.

The Marshals conducted an inspection of the Washington prison complex, which houses both local defendants and federal defendants awaiting trial. The inspection came shortly after a federal judge held the District of Columbia’s Director of Corrections and Prison Officer in contempt and asked the Department of Justice to investigate whether the inmates’ civil rights were being abused at the facility.

While the Marshals’ inspection found that the building where the defendants were being held on January 30 was adequate, federal officials said they would move about 400 other inmates out of a secondary prison building after the inspection found that conditions there did not meet the minimum standards. They are being transferred to a facility in Pennsylvania.

A spokesman for the DC Department of Corrections did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Attorney General Merrick Garland had said during congressional testimony last month that Marshals conducted the inspection and the Justice Department “conducted a review” of the conditions in the jail.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth had summoned prison officials to court last month in the case of Christopher Worrell, a member of the Proud Boys who has been charged with the January 6 attack that delayed medical treatment for a broken wrist. He had been recommended for surgery in June, but had still not undergone the procedure by mid-October, in part due to a delay by prison officers in handing over medical documents. Worrell has been accused of attacking police officers with a pepper spray gel, and prosecutors have claimed he traveled to Washington and coordinated with the Proud Boys before the siege.

Other defendants on Jan. 6 held in jail have denied what they say are deplorable conditions there.

More than 630 people have been charged in the January 6 uprising in which thousands of pro-Trump supporters stormed the building in an attempt to disrupt the certification of President Joe Biden’s victory.

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