The prison he found seemed virtually ungoverned. Corrections officers disappeared from cellblocks for long periods. Those who were present were often disregarded. With officers absent or ignored, vulnerable inmates, including those who were wounded and bleeding, often pleaded in vain for help, several inmates said. Violence — robberies in dark tunnels, assaults in crowded dormitories, stabbings in cramped cells — was virtually unavoidable. “Like Devil’s Island,” one current inmate said.
Mr. Simon had not been there a month when a man began stabbing him in the face and neck in the middle of the night. He recalled being told afterward by an officer that the man had just been released from the segregation unit: the isolation cells reserved for punishment but increasingly seen as safe havens.
The article mentions some problems in the rest of the state as well.