The rumor mill has gone wild at Beaumont federal prison after Hurricane Harvey. There are wild rumors of inmates’ deaths and health threats after reports claimed that Beaumont federal prisoners were not evacuated. Now, Representative Lloyd Doggett is probing into the events surrounding Harvey and federal prisoners.
US Rep. Lloyd Doggett of Austin, together with other prison advocacy groups, has been compelled to ask questions. And, he wants answers.
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has been called to explain what happened at Beaumont’s federal prison before and after Hurricane Harvey. The BOP decided not to evacuate prison inmates at the Beaumont facility when Hurricane Harvey approached.
This inaction has fueled the rumor mill with unsavory incidents that may have happened at the federal prison. Human rights groups as well as government officials now seek to know what actually happened at Beaumont during Hurricane Harvey?
Rumors and Denials About Hurricane Harvey at Beaumont’s Federal Prison
There have been a plethora of rumors and speculations over what befell non-evacuated prisoners across the states. But that of Beaumont’s federal prison was ignited after a woman, Rachel Villabolos, granted an interview to a news firm known as Left Voice.
Villalobos stated the wife of an inmate at the facility told her prisoners had only toilet water to drink. And that two inmates had already died at the facility.
She went on to say prisoners and prison staff had no more food to eat. And that they subsisted on two sandwiches per day, following Hurricane Harvey. She went on to state that inmates defecated in plastic bags to save toilet water… for drinking.
The Bureau of Prisons denies all of these allegations. They insist there was ample food supplies and bottled water to sustain both inmates and staff at Beaumont. And they emphasize the facility provides:
“…24-hour medical coverage for all inmates.”
The Bureau of Prisons however admits there was some flooding at the Beaumont Federal Corrections Complex. But that the water has receded significantly and inmates were perfectly safe in housing units.
They maintain the facility relies on its own water reserve since the city’s water supply has been impacted by the hurricane. They also state the prison’s power generator serves as backup where there is power outage in the city.
Rep Lloyd Doggett Joins Others in Probe Into Harvey & Texas Federal Prisons
Rep Lloyd Doggett has joined with others to question the Bureau of Prisons over what happened at Beaumont during Harvey.
- ACLU of Texas
- Prison Justice League
- Texas Civil Rights Project
- Grassroots Leadership based in Austin (prison reform group)
“Due to several reports of alarming conditions at the Beaumont facility, I have inquired with the Federal Bureau of Prisons to express my concern and obtain clarification about what actions are being undertaken to protect the well-being of prisoners and staff and to restore the facility to pre-disaster conditions,” Doggett said.