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DOVER, Del. (AP) - A judge presiding over the prosecution of several inmates charged in a fatal prison uprising in Delaware has told attorneys he'd like to handle the defendants in groups of four.

Eighteen prisoners have been charged in the February riot. Sixteen, including some already serving time for murder, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of corrections officer Steven Floyd.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Delaware prison officials say two inmates have been injured in an escape attempt.
 
Department of Correction officials say the escape attempt happened Sunday evening at Howard R. Young Correctional Institution in Wilmington.
 
Authorities say both men were able to gain access to the roof of the facility after breaching security measures in the recreation yard.  
 
Once on the roof, one offender turned back, while the other was discovered by an outside patrol.
 

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A federal appeals court has revived a lawsuit challenging conditions on Virginia's death row.

A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that the lower court improperly dismissed a case brought by five condemned inmates.

The lower court said the case was resolved because prison officials had eased restrictions and granted death row inmates more privileges, including more recreation time.

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During a Delaware Senate panel hearing correctional officers told lawmakers that staff were so outnumbered many of the inmates have unprecedented power.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the officers said this power contributed to the 18 hour hostage standoff that resulted in the death of Officer Steve Floyd.

Officer Aaron Forkum described the situation as “a three ring circus” at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center where the uprising took place.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia is participating in an effort aimed at reducing the use of segregation and restrictive housing in its prisons.

The Virginia Department of Corrections says Virginia is one of five states that have recently joined the Safe Alternatives to Segregation Initiative of the Vera Institute of Justice.

The department says Virginia will be assessed on how it uses restrictive housing and then will work with Vera to come up with ways to reduce its use.

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Philosophy in prison. It's a program that has been going on for the last 15 years at Salisbury University in which inmates meet with faculty and students to discuss the subject at the Eastern Correctional Institution. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush spoke with associate professor Tim Stock about the success of the program which will be honored at a symposium this Saturday at the TETC building on the campus of Salisbury University.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - An outbreak of the flu continues at the Howard R. Young Correctional Institution, where the Department of Corrections has recently reported seven new cases of the virus.

Department of Corrections spokeswoman Chelsea Hicks says that the number of inmates confirmed to have the Influenza A virus has risen to 41 confirmed cases. Three offenders remain housed in the infirmary.

On Feb. 24, officials said six inmates had fallen ill while 40 others were being monitored. The number of cases rose to 37 last week, with an additional 18 inmates being monitored.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - About 850 pre-trial detainees who were held in the now-closed men's section of the Baltimore City Detention Center have been moved to buildings within about a block of the notorious state-run jail.

State officials led reporters on a tour of the maze-like correctional complex in downtown Baltimore Thursday, two days after the last male inmates and detainees were moved from the jail.

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JESSUP, Md. (AP) - Maryland public safety officials are hosting a media day at the Patuxent Institution in Jessup.
 
The tour on Tuesday is one of a series of media days that are being held in Maryland's state correctional facilities.
 
State officials say Patuxent is a unique treatment-oriented maximum-security correctional facility. It houses both men and women separately. It also operates on a graded-tier system for inmates.
 

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HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) - Maryland's four remaining death-row inmates would become eligible for transfer to medium-security prisons after Gov. Martin O'Malley signs executive orders commuting their sentences to life without parole.

They would lose their guarantee of single-bed cells, however. State prison agency spokesman Gerard Shields says some inmates prefer to have no cell mate.

All four men are housed at the maximum-security North Branch Correctional Institution near Cumberland.

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