life behind bars
11:17 pm
Sun May 12, 2013

State prison brings together solitary inmates

Several inmates at the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla are taking part in a new program to try to ease violence and reduce the number of inmates in solitary confinement.

So far, the program is voluntary, and it targets dangerous, confrontational inmates who have been locked away in isolation.

Several gang members are taking part in the program, which puts several prisoners together in a room for classes on such things as anger management and fostering relationships.

There are currently about 400 inmates in solitary confinement in Washington's prisons.

Corrections Secretary Bernie Warner says they make up the smallest percentage of the prison population, but they are the most likely to assault staff and other prisoners.