Around 60 inmates from the St. Louis Justice Center started a riot late Sunday, local media reported, citing police. Videos from the scene show a crowd gathering outside as prisoners smash windows and throw out various objects.
Police cordoned off the area around the St. Louis Justice Center in Missouri where a riot broke out at 8:45pm local time on Sunday. Local media reported that inmates threw out tables, chairs, computers, and other objects through the smashed window on the third floor. They also set sheets and toilet paper on fire before tossing them to the street.
The inmates were filmed holding up a sign reading ‘Help Us’ as they shouted at onlookers. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that some chanted, “we want court dates,” referring to the delays in court appearances and trials caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
TV channel KTVI FOX 2 News quoted police as saying that around 60 inmates are involved in the riot, adding that there were no confirmed weapons.
As the riot was taking place, dozens were protesting on the sidewalk outside the building against what they called the “inhumane conditions” in the jail.
A similar revolt occurred inside the St. Louis Justice Center in early February, when more than 100 inmates took over a section of the facility, set fires and threw items out of broken windows. The inmates previously complained about what they said were unsafe living conditions amid the pandemic.
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