Alaska Ombudsman finds state at fault in prisoner cases

The Alaska Ombudsman says the Department of Corrections mishandled cases involving prisoners in Palmer and Anchorage.

KTUU-TV reports that Ombudsman Linda Lord-Jenkins found the department at fault in a report released Friday.

The report substantiated complaints from seven inmates at the Palmer Correctional Center who say they were punished for plotting an escape based only on accusations from a confidential informant.

Lord-Jenkins wrote that the informant had a questionable disciplinary record and that there’s no evidence that the accused inmates even knew each other. One was a 70-year-old man who now has trouble walking.

The report also found that a federal inmate was held in solitary confinement at the Anchorage Correctional Center for two years without being told the reason.

Lord-Jenkins called the incident “alarming.”