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Police say inmate attacked 9 COs

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    Daquan Monroe
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    The entrance to the Coxsackie Correctional Facility off Route 9W in Coxsackie.
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    Contributed photoThe entrance into the Coxsackie Correctional Facility off Route 9W where an inmate from Queens allegedly assaulted nine correctional officers last week.
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    C-GM file photoGov. Andrew M. Cuomo tours the Special Housing Unit of the Correctional Facility in May 2015.
November 13, 2017 06:20 pm

COXSACKIE — A Coxsackie Correctional Facility inmate allegedly attacked nine corrections officers at the maximum security prison last week, sending two COs to the hospital.

Daquan Monroe, 21, of Queens, is accused of attacking the officers Nov. 5, state police spokesman Steven Nevel said. Monroe is serving a four-year sentence for weapons possession and attempted robbery, according to a statement from the New York State Correctional Officers & Police Benevolent Association, the union representing COs.

As Monroe was being escorted back to his housing unit, he struck the officer in the face. When the officer tried to subdue Monroe with a body hold, Monroe resisted, which caused him and the officer to fall down a flight of stairs, according to authorities.

Monroe broke out of the hold and ran to the housing area where he was pursued by two other officers. The inmate then attacked another officer, according to the statement.

Two officers were taken to Albany Medical Center to be treated for injuries. A female officer received a broken hand. The extent of the other officer’s injuries is unknown. Both officers were treated and released, said James Miller, communication director for the New York State Correctional Officers & Police Benevolent Association.

Seven officers were treated in the prison’s medical clinic for minor injures, which included bruises and other upper-body injuries, Miller said.

Monroe was subdued by multiple officers and placed in mechanical restraints for escort to the medical clinic. Monroe refused to walk and fought the officers who were escorting him. They regained control of Monroe and carried him to the clinic, according to authorities.

While receiving medical treatment, Monroe kicked and struck an escorting officer. Monroe was evaluated by the medical staff before he was escorted to a special housing unit. Monroe faces internal disciplinary charges, prison officials said.

Police are investigating Monroe’s motive for the attack, state police Senior Investigator Pete Kusminsky said Monday.

“Charges are pending,” Kusminsky said.

Attacks on corrections officers at the Coxsackie facility are infrequent, Kusminsky said.

“I couldn’t give an average because it’s sporadic,” Kusminsky said.

Monroe is thought to have acted alone, Kusminsky said. Investigators could determine a motive in about two weeks, he said.

“Sunday’s assault shows how dangerous it can be for our members when an inmate becomes combative,” said Michael Mazzella, the union’s vice president for the Mid-Hudson Region. “The extremely violent assault on Sunday is a perfect example of why we need strict disciplinary measures for inmates who attack staff.”

Monroe was transferred to Coxsackie Correctional Facility from Rikers Island Prison Complex to serve sentence, Miller said. In 2014, the inmate attacked a corrections officer at Rikers Island.

“He was being held in Rikers on the charges, but hadn’t been convicted yet,” Miller said of Monroe.

When attacks on correctional officers occur, union officials within the prison notify the regional vice president of the association’s chapter, Miller said. The association covers state prison facilities.

“Assaults on staff do occur regularly,” Miller said. “Like a police officer or anyone in law enforcement, it is a dangerous job.”

An investigation into the attacks is ongoing and is being conducted by state police, the Greene County District Attorney’s Office and the union, Kusminsky said.

To reach reporter Daniel Zuckerman email or follow him on Twitter @DZuckerman_CGM.