6:50pm Thursday 15th November 2012
Exclusive By Ben Parsons
Two Lewes Prison inmates lured staff to their cell to attack them, it has been claimed.
The prisoners are said to have feigned a medical emergency before attacking a female healthcare worker and other staff early on Saturday, November 10.
Sussex Police, who seized a wooden chairleg for evidence, are investigating eight alleged assaults reported after the confrontation.
The alarm was raised in C Wing |at the prison in Brighton Road, Lewes, shortly after midnight on Saturday.
A female healthcare worker suffered a head injury and a male worker suffered a badly bruised upper arm.
Staff restrained the prisoners but eight workers – five men and |three women – reported they were assaulted.
Police confirmed they had all suffered “cuts and bruises”.
On-call staff were brought in from home to cover for the injured workers.
Two went to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton and two to the Princess Royal Hospital in |Haywards Heath and all were later discharged.
The Ministry of Justice has not confirmed if they have returned to work.
The prisoners are understood to have been transferred to another jail. No arrests were made.
Serious The prison’s Independent Monitoring Board (IMB), which scrutinises |the work of the prison on behalf of the Ministry of Justice, was notified about the attack at 1am on Saturday.
A member of the board visited the prison in the morning and confirmed the prisoners were unhurt.
Their transfer to another prison was also overseen.
Neil Ambrose, who has chaired the IMB for two years, said: “It is one of the most serious assaults against staff I have seen.
“It was an incident which could have got worse had it not been for the professionalism of the officers involved.”
A spokeswoman for the Prison Service said in a statement: “An incident at HMP Lewes involving two offenders took place during the early hours of Saturday, November 10.
“Four members of staff were injured and the police attended.
“There is an ongoing police investigation into the circumstances around the incident.”
Sussex Police said in a statement: “Police are investigating, in conjunction with the Prison Service.
“No arrests have been made at this time.”
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