Local News


State will reduce use of lethal force behind bar

Posted at 7:13 PM, Jan 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-14 22:14:52-05
Armed prison guards using bullets behind bars is about to become less common as the state responds to pressure from a use-of-force audit. 
More guards, better training and rubber bullets. That's how officials will cut down on deadly shootings in Nevada prisons. 
The key word, though, is reduce, since they have no plans to eliminate the use of live ammunition.
Nevada Department of Corrections Interim Director E.K. McDaniel defended the use of shotguns loaded with birdshot at a Thursday meeting of the Board of State Prison Commissioners.
This comes as Nevada faces lawsuits over prison shootings. 
Contact 13 investigated one at High Desert State Prison in 2014 that left inmate Carlos Perez dead and Andrew Arevalo severely wounded. 
The two were shot while handcuffed behind their backs by guards who say they were breaking up a fight.
McDaniel said the state's new tools reduce the need for lethal force, but said it remains a valuable and potentially life-saving last resort.
In addition to the lawsuits, the state Attorney General is reviewing guards' actions in the Perez shooting. 
We're closely following that case expect an announcement from the AG very soon.