AN inmate of Limerick prison was subjected to a four-hour ordeal when another prisoner took him hostage and seriously assaulted him.
The injured inmate was released yesterday from University Hospital Limerick after what was described as a “terrifying ordeal” this Monday.
It is understood that the victim was on a landing on the C-wing shortly after 6pm on Monday night when he was dragged into the other man’s cell in what one source said was “a totally unprovoked attack”.
The offender was armed with a ‘shiv’, an improvised weapon sometimes wielded by prisoners.
The victim was repeatedly beaten and had a pillow case put over his head in the course of a long drawn out assault, according to one source.
A stand-off with prison officers took around four hours to conclude following the intervention of prison officers, who forced their way into the cell at 10.30pm.
The victim was treated first at the prison surgery and was later transferred to hospital in Dooradoyle.
He was discharged on Tuesday afternoon and it is believed will suffer no long-term damage.
“The prisoner would have history of holding people against their will and the fellow who was dragged into the cell would be known as one of the quieter prisoners and was left totally traumatised by what happened. There is no way he should have been left in the cell that long,” a source told the Limerick Leader.
It is understood that the alleged perpetrator in the incident is currently serving four years in prison after holding a number of workers hostage during the course of a serious robbery.
Roxboro gardai were informed of the hostage situation by the prison authorities on Monday night and it remains to be seen whether charges of assault or other offences will arise from the incident.
A spokesman for the Irish Prison Service confirmed that an incident had taken place and paid tribute to staff who had negotiated with the offending prisoner over a period of four hours.
“The matter was dealt with in a very professional way by the staff in Limerick and we are all grateful that there were no serious injuries to the prisoners or the staff,” the spokesman told the Limerick Leader.
“Both prisoners are from Tipperary and the perpetrator is doing four years in prison after he held three members of staff hostage in a business premises,” a garda source said.
The injured party was said to be very shaken by the incident but making a good recovery.