Wisconsin youth prison fight, staff member in critical condition

Lincoln Hills School

A staff member at Wisconsin’s youth prison was in critical condition Tuesday following a fight with an inmate, state Department of Corrections officials said.

The fight happened Monday evening at the Lincoln Hills-Copper Lake Schools, the state's youth prison in Irma in northern Wisconsin. Department of Corrections spokesperson Beth Hardtke said a 16-year-old inmate assaulted a staff member in a residence hall and then attacked a second staff member.

The first staff member was taken to a hospital, treated and released. The second staff member's head struck concrete, however. The worker was taken to a hospital and remained in critical condition Tuesday morning, Hardtke said.

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The inmate did not suffer any injuries that required medical treatment, she said. The Corrections Department was working Tuesday to move that inmate to a "suitable facility." She did not say where and did not immediately respond to follow-up emails asking where the inmate would go and for more details about the two staff members' positions.

Lincoln Hills-Copper Lake is Wisconsin's only youth prison. The facility has been plagued by allegations of staff-on-inmate abuse, including excessive use of pepper spray, restraints and strip searches. A court-appointed monitor is currently overseeing the facility.