The Washington Post

Prisoners in Oregon may have to pay for damage caused by three July 4 brawls

Prisoners in Oregon will likely divvy up the tab for a spate of violence last month that cost the state nearly $25,000.

At Oregon’s only maximum security prison, 115 prisoners were involved in three brawls over the Fourth of July weekend. Prison officials estimated $10,913.58 in kitchen damages, $8,071.46 for new mattresses and linens and $4,752.96 for new inmate uniforms and shoes, according to a report by the Oregonian. The inmates will likely also be charged for the 73 canisters of pepper spray used by prison staff to subdue the fights. The pepper spray cost a total of $816.

The 115 inmates were locked up in disciplinary cells after the fights, which are still under investigation by police.

Under Oregon law, prison officials are allowed to take away all but $30 of an inmate’s trust account. Inmates can be charged for “damages or destruction caused by willful misconduct,” according to state regulations.

Spending on prisons – which cost $1.3 billion out of the state’s $13.6 billion general budget — has been a rising concern in Oregon. The state pays about $84.81 for each prisoner, which includes food, security, health care and social services, according to the Partnership for Safety and Justice. That figure has grown 65 percent over the last two decades.

In a prison in northern Nevada, inmates are also expected to help pay for their food and health care – the first prison in the nation to charge inmates for the services. Inmates there pay $6 a day for meals and $10 for doctor visits, which prison officials said will save taxpayers millions of dollars a year.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Show Comments
The Republicans debated Saturday night. The New Hampshire primary is Feb. 9. Get caught up on the race.
Highlights from Saturday's GOP debate
Except for an eminent domain attack from Bush, Trump largely avoided strikes from other candidates.

Christie went after Rubio for never having been a chief executive and for relying on talking points.

Carson tried to answer a question on Obamacare by lamenting that he hadn't been asked an earlier question about North Korea.
The GOP debate in 3 minutes
Play Video
We have all donors in the audience. And the reason they're booing me? I don't want their money!
Donald Trump, after the debate crowd at St. Anselm's College booed him for telling Jeb Bush to be "quiet."
Play Video
New Hampshire polling averages
Donald Trump holds a commanding lead in the next state to vote, but Marco Rubio has recently seen a jump in his support, according to polls.
New Hampshire polling averages
A victory in New Hampshire revitalized Hillary Clinton's demoralized campaign in 2008. But this time, she's trailing Bernie Sanders, from neighboring Vermont. She's planning to head Sunday to Flint, Mich., where a cost-saving decision led to poisonous levels of lead in the water of the poor, heavily black, rust-belt city. 
55% 38%
Upcoming debates
Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

Campaign 2016
State of the race

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.