Arizona Prisons

Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone
The Arizona Department of Corrections announced a plan Monday to suspend sending people convicted of crimes from county jails to state prisons to mitigate the risks posed by the coronavirus. But the sheriff of Maricopa County says he did not sign on to the plan and is concerned about its implementation.
Mar. 30, 2020
Dana Huff
Five incarcerated people who are near death are waiting on Gov. Doug Ducey's signature to be released from the Arizona Department of Corrections. The inmates are hoping for release before the coronavirus enters state prisons.
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Mar. 26, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
A federal judge has denied an emergency motion that would have required the Arizona Department of Corrections to implement procedures addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mar. 23, 2020
Members of a private Facebook group for Arizona Correctional Officers say the Department of Corrections is selling prison toilet paper to employees at cost during a pandemic that has caused shortages of personal hygiene products.
Mar. 20, 2020
browning unit prison
The ACLU of Arizona is asking state and county officials to take steps to reduce the number of people in jails and prisons as the coronavirus pandemic spreads.
Mar. 19, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
Under pressure from a federal judge, the Arizona Department of Corrections has changed some of its policies related to health care in state prisons.
Mar. 18, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
The Arizona Department of Corrections has canceled in-person visitations for all publicly and privately run-prisons. But there are still ways for families to communicate with loved ones.
Mar. 16, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
A federal judge has ordered the Arizona Department of Corrections to submit its plans for preparing and managing the coronavirus in state prisons.
Mar. 16, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
Attorneys representing the people incarcerated in state prisons say the Arizona Department of Corrections and its private health care provider, Centurion, are not adequately prepared for a possible coronavirus outbreak.
Mar. 14, 2020
Arizona State Prison Complex - Florence
Infectious diseases can spread quickly in the close confines of jails and prisons. The Arizona Department of Corrections says it is in contact with the Arizona Department of Health Services and prepared to handle any cases of the coronavirus in state prisons, should they occur.
Mar. 5, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
State and county agencies are still trying to determine the cause of water contamination at a state prison in southern Arizona, four months after the issue was first reported by KJZZ. In October 2019, after inmates in the Douglas prison complained of brown, foul smelling water, the Arizona Department of Corrections confirmed water at the prison had a “noticeable petroleum odor and taste.”
Feb. 20, 2020
screen shot of court document
The Arizona Department of Corrections is facing millions of dollars in fines each month if it fails to comply with an ongoing settlement agreement over health care in state prisons. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld a $1.4 million fine against Arizona over poor prison health care that was first issued in June 2018.
Feb. 6, 2020
Arizona Department of Corrections building
Once again, families of inmates living at the Douglas prison say their loved ones are reporting drinking water that smells and tastes like diesel fuel. In October 2019, after inmates in the Douglas prison made similar complaints of brown, foul smelling water, the Arizona Department of Corrections confirmed water at the prison had a “noticeable petroleum odor and taste.”
Jan. 30, 2020
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled against the Arizona Department of Corrections, allowing a $1.4 million fine for poor health care in state prisons to stand. The court handed down a unanimous opinion Wednesday rejecting the Department of Corrections’ appeals of several district court orders in the Parsons vs. Ryan prison health care case. The court handed down a unanimous opinion Wednesday.
Jan. 29, 2020
cages at Baker Ward at Arizona State Prison Complex - Phoeni
A high-ranking former Arizona prison health care official has testified about what he calls cruel, dated, insensitive and inhumane conditions in state prisons. Dr. Urdaneta said he quit his job with Corizon in Arizona in May 2019. “I did not want to continue really working within a system that I think was failing in many ways,” he said. “I found the Arizona system very onerous, difficult to work with, misguided and jaded.”
Jan. 23, 2020
Three incarcerated women living in the same unit at the Perryville prison in Goodyear say the Arizona Department of Corrections is withholding toilet paper and feminine hygiene products. KJZZ is not identifying the women or their unit because they all expressed fear of retaliation for contacting the press.
Dec. 27, 2019
Sergio Almanza
Advocacy letters filed by the ACLU in federal court on behalf of incarcerated people in Arizona accuse health care workers in state prisons of falsifying medical records and endangering the lives of their patients.
Dec. 5, 2019
Arizona Capitol building
Arizona state Rep. Diego Rodriguez says privatized health care for inmates in state prisons is a failed experiment whose time has come to an end. Rodriguez has authored a new bill that he says will undo the privatization that was mandated by the state legislature 10 years ago.
Dec. 5, 2019
A new report from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality shows the state is concerned that a well supplying water to a state prison in Douglas could be contaminated.
Nov. 21, 2019
Prison Cell
A federal judge is giving the parties in the Parsons vs. Ryan prison health care lawsuit 60 days to renegotiate a settlement over conditions in Arizona prisons. In 2012, the original lawsuit was filed in federal court alleging unconstitutional health care conditions for people incarcerated in state prisons.
Nov. 13, 2019

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