Here’s what KTAR News learned from overdoses, drugs in Arizona prisons
Mar 31, 2023, 4:35 AM
PHOENIX — This week, KTAR News has spoken with state leaders on the Arizona Department of Corrections Rehabilitation and Reentry, overdoses and drug use in prisons.
Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs and ADCRR Director Ryan Thornell both expressed their desire to revamp a system they believe is troubled and neglected.
Here’s what we learned:
Narcotics are making their way into correctional facilities and in some cases, leading to emergency situations.
The scope of overdoses and how the drugs are making it into prisons are top concerns for Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs, who took office in January.
“I think this is why transparency is so important, because it sounds like a lot of stuff has happened that maybe has been tried to be covered up,” Hobbs, when told of the Lewis overdoses, said in an exclusive interview.
Katie Hobbs has put the Arizona Department of Corrections Rehabilitation and Reentry in her crosshairs since becoming governor in January.
In an exclusive interview with KTAR News, Hobbs spoke on why she has made state prisons a priority, problems she’s encountered and plans for reforming the system.
Newly appointed Arizona Department of Corrections Rehabilitation and Reentry Director Ryan Thornell acknowledges drugs are getting into to prisons and being used by inmates.
“We also know there’s substance use within our facilities,” Thornell said. “That’s an issue in corrections that we’ve been battling for decades.”