Ceiling collapses at correctional center in Diboll

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Nineteen inmates were hurt, including one who was flown to Houston. None of the injuries are life-threatening

The ceiling of a building at a correctional center in Diboll collapsed Saturday, injuring more than a dozen offenders.

It happened at around 11:30am. We're told the ceiling, which consists primarily of sheet rock, injured 19 of the 86 people inside the housing unit.

All 19 were transported to a local hospital for evaluation. One was then flown to a hospital here in Houston. According to the warden, that prisoner is expected to be OK and recover. There other inmates suffered minor injuries. One prisoner broke his hip.

"I feel bad because they are human beings. No matter what situation you are in, prison. You're still a human being," said neighbor Desmond Mitchell.

The building, used for housing inmates older than 50 years old, is located at 1604 South First Street.

Officials are there, assessing damage to the roof and trying to figure out how the collapse happened.

Texas Department of Criminal Justice is sending a team to assess the situation. The investigation into this ceiling collapse is now underway.

"If they are going to have people inside the jail, they should have someone come and inspect the whole thing," said neighbor Anibol Jasso Jr.

"They're doing their assessment, we have some offenders in the gym, they're fixing to go back to their living areas," said Ken Montgomery with Management & Training Corp. "We're probably going to be shipping some to TDCJ due to not being able to go back in there."

Nearly 90 prisoners were transported to another facility in Huntsville.

The 518-bed minimum-security prison is operated by Centerville, Utah-based Management & Training Corp.

Because of the ceiling collapse, visitation was cancelled for today.
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