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Prisoner shouts ‘this is for Allah’ as he attacks guard at HMP Wayland in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 11:23 26 July 2017 | UPDATED: 07:59 27 July 2017

There were 81 attacks on staff at HMP Wayland in Norfolk last year. Picture: Ian Burt

There were 81 attacks on staff at HMP Wayland in Norfolk last year. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant

A prisoner reportedly shouted “this is for Allah” and then cut a guard and injured another inmate with a blade in HMP Wayland.

Then Justice Secretary and South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss visits HMP Wayland ein April 2017. Photo from Ministry of Justice. Then Justice Secretary and South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss visits HMP Wayland ein April 2017. Photo from Ministry of Justice.

The attack in the prison near Watton took place on Friday afternoon and both the guard and inmate were taken to hospital for treatment.

It is understood the guard was trying to stop an attack on a prisoner when his head was cut by the attacker. The injured officer and inmate who was attacked were released from hospital later on Friday.

It is the latest in a series of vicious attacks on staff at Norfolk prisons and comes as violence in prisons against both guards and inmates soars.

The Mirror Online reported that two days after the attack in HMP Wayland the prisoner then assaulted a second officer when he was moved to HMP Lincoln.

A source told the Mirror: “He was voicing extreme views. He said ‘only white people should die’ and ‘This is for Allah’ as he did it.

“He should have gone to a high risk unit for people who have been radicalised. Especially after the first incident at HMP Wayland - he should not have just been transferred to HMP Lincoln.”

A spokesman for Norfolk Police said: “Police are investigating a serious assault which happened at HMP Wayland on Friday (July 21).

“The incident happened at about 1.30pm when a prisoner attacked another inmate and a prison officer with a bladed weapon.

An officer was stabbed in Norwich prison in June where attacks on staff have also rocketed. Photo: Steve Adams An officer was stabbed in Norwich prison in June where attacks on staff have also rocketed. Photo: Steve Adams

“Both victims suffered cuts which required hospital treatment.

“The suspect involved was moved to HMP Lincoln where he was involved in another assault against a prison officer on Sunday July 23. Investigations are ongoing.”

A spokesman for the East of England Ambulance Service Trust (EEAST) said they sent a rapid response vehicle and two ambulance crews to the prison.

They treated one patient who had a serious head injury and was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital in a stable condition.

Paul Cawkwell, governor of Wayland Prison was attacked by an inmate in the canteen last year. Picture: Ian Burt Paul Cawkwell, governor of Wayland Prison was attacked by an inmate in the canteen last year. Picture: Ian Burt

A second patient was also taken to the N&N.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said: “We do not tolerate any violence in our prisons. When incidents like this occur we will always work closely with the police to push for the strongest possible punishment.”

In June an officer in Norwich prison was also taken to hospital after being stabbed in the neck. Police said on Wednesday their investigation was still ongoing.

And in January, HMP Wayland inmate Djavon Williams attacked the prison chaplain when he was refused entry to Muslim prayers.

The 25-year-old punched The Rev’d James Ridge, cutting his nose and bruising his face.

In August last year inmate Thomas Howard punched the prison’s governor, Paul Cawkwell, in the canteen.

Mr Cawkwell’s eye socket was fractured. Howard, who had previously attacked another member of staff, was jailed for three years.

The latest figures from the MoJ show there were 81 attacks on staff in HMP Wayland last year, up from 29 in 2013.

In HMP Norwich, meanwhile, there were 73 attacks on staff in 2016 - more than treble the number in 2013.

And there was a 124pc increase in the total number of assaults in HMP Norwich from 2013 to 2016.

The rise in attacks has been blamed on overcrowding and staff shortages.

MoJ figures show staffing levels have been cut at HMP Norwich from 380 in March 2014 to 304 by March this year.

But in HMP Wayland staff numbers increased over that time from 310 to 360.

An MoJ spokesman said: “We have implemented a range of measures to increase safety across the estate, including the provision of body-worn cameras, the installation of CCTV and extra training for officers.

“We do not underestimate the challenges faced by officers and are fully committed to making prisons safer.”

In November last year the MoJ said it would recruit an extra 2,500 prison officers.

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