|Posted:||February 8, 2022 09:30 AM|
|From:||Representative Aaron D. Kaufer|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Studying the cost of increasing staffing of correction officers at state correctional institutions|
|On February 15, 2018, Sergeant Mark Baserman, a corrections officer at SCI-Somerset, was killed by an inmate. The inmate punched and kicked Sgt. Baserman numerous times and he later succumbed to his injuries 11 days later. The inmate was charged with criminal homicide and the Somerset County District Attorney’s Office is seeking the death penalty. The case is still pending.
In addition to this unspeakable tragedy, there have been a growing number of major assaults on correction officers in state prisons. A major assault is one that inflicts injuries that require the victim to be taken for medical treatment outside the prison. One such major assault at SCI-Greene involved a state corrections officer being stabbed 35 times.
Corrections officers perform a vital and essential role in our state prisons. They serve as a voice of authority while ensuring the safety and welfare of prisoners. Despite dealing with some of the most dangerous criminals imaginable, these courageous law enforcement officers disrupt violent conflicts, ensure order and help to rehabilitate prisoners. That is why I am introducing legislation requesting the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee conduct a comprehensive study on the cost of implementing certain safety plans for staffing at state correctional institutions. They will then produce a report so that the General Assembly can determine if any changes are necessary.
Introduced as HR174