New charges issued this week against five inmates offer more information about what happened in a prison riot at a South Carolina’s maximum-security facility earlier this year.
The state Department of Corrections announced charges Friday filed against five inmates at Lee Correctional Institution near Bishopville over a February 26 incident that led to at least one guard being stabbed. The prison was placed on lockdown for nine hours as officials tried to restore control of one wing.
Three of the inmates, 22-year-old Tore Dove, 21-year-old Christian Roman, and 30-year-old William Wallace were charged with attempted murder. A fourth inmate 21-year-old Darrian Roberson was charged with four counts of assault and battery and carrying or concealing a weapon. Both Roberson and 23-year-old Antonio Blakely were charged with being prisoners participating in a riot. Dove, Roman, and Wallace were also charged with rioting and carrying weapons.
Wallace has been serving a life sentence for the 2012 execution-style killing of two men in a Columbia apartment. A jury found him guilty on the double-murder and other charges last August. The other inmates named in the warrants were in prison on robbery or burglary charges, with the exception of Roberson’s conviction for pointing a firearm.
The warrants say Roberson and Roman resisted as correctional officers tried to search them for weapons during a sweep of the prison’s Chesterfield Unit. The warrants state the pair’s resistance, including attempts to fight the officers, spurred other inmates to riot. Four officers, including an associate warden, were attacked in the ensuing melee.
Warrants accuse Dove and Wallace of stabbing one guard in the back with a homemade knife as the officer tried to flee the riot. A second officer tripped and fell while running, but the warrants say another officer intervened as Wallace attempted to stab her, as well.
In all, seven officers were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, although a spokeswoman said all were released within a few hours. It was not until 9:00 p.m. that night until prison staff retook control of the wing and ended the lockdown.