A lifetime prisoner at the Maximum Security Prison in Arouca is claiming he was beaten in a cell at Division F last Thursday night by close to 20 prison officers.
The prisoner, identified as Errol McCollin, is serving a life sentence for murder.
A relative of McCollin contacted Newsday and said he was told about the beating by an officer who witnessed it and felt excessive force was used.
Around 8 pm on Thursday, McCollin was in his cell when a group of prison officers entered his cell, searched it and found a cell phone and some narcotics.
The incident was allegedly witnessed by other prisoners who began pounding on their cell doors in protest.
The relative who contacted Newsday said he is hiring an attorney to seek redress and that he was the only relative who had been seeking the interest of the prisoner. He said McCollin had complained in the past of being frustrated over the way he was treated and wanted prison authorities to counsel him.
On Friday, Prisons Commissioner Gerard Wilson confirmed officers searched McCollin’s cell on Thursday night and found the contraband.
He said when officers went in, McCollin tried to hide something and when they tried to retrieve the hidden items, he resisted and some force was used.
He said McCollin was examined at the infirmary and there were no visible signs of injury. McCollin will be charged for infraction of the prison rules.