Youths 'Targeted Known Sex Offenders' At Juvenile Detention Centre With 'Makeshift Weapons'
A violent riot at a juvenile detention centre on the NSW Central Coast began after a group of inmates used makeshift weapons to "target sex offenders", according to the Public Service Association.
Police were called to the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre in Kariong, near Gosford, around 8:30pm Sunday night, after dozens of detainees became violent.
At least six inmates were seriously injured, a seventh suffered a suspected broken nose.
Paramedics locked themselves in a secure area to treat the injured, while several inmates ended up on the roof
NSW Police confirmed to 10 daily that negotiations with a number of detainees were still ongoing at 1.30pm Monday afternoon.
One 18 year old suffered stab wounds and facial injuries and was transported to the Royal North Shore Hospital, while the others, all aged between 17 and 20 suffered various injuries and were taken to Gosford hospital for treatment.
The union representing prison guards claimed that inmates targeted known sex offenders within the complex.
"The events that occurred up there are nothing short of horrific," Public Service Association general secretary Stewart Little told reporters on Monday
"Upwards of 30 of those detainees have obtained control of that centre, they have then targeted known sex offenders and set about, as we understand, with the intent to either murder those offenders or do very, very serious harm," he continued.
"A number of those detainees are currently sitting in intensive care with stab wounds to the chest and serious head injuries".
Little claimed it was only "by the grace of God" that there wasn't a fatality.
Superintendent Tony Joice from Brisbane Water Police said police arrived to a "sudden and unprovoked incident".
"A number of inmates have armed themselves with makeshift weapons and have gone about assaulting other inmates within the centre," he told media on Monday morning.
Joice wouldn't confirm if the assaults were on known sex offenders, but said police were working to "identify the means and reasons why the assaults have taken place."
Joice said the riot was"unique" because a number of inmates had isolated themselves inside a building within the centre after the assault.
As for earlier reports of a chainsaw being involved, Joice said it was a "myth".
"There were no chainsaws involved," he said.
Police and ambulance officers, as well as firefighters, have been on the scene since the riot began, establishing a perimeter around the centre.
Vision of the incident shows detainees on the roof, holding wood and metal rods while allegedly throwing unidentified objects at police below.
"Twice this year, our members have had to walk off the job state-wide to protest their safety and the government continues to drag their heels," Little from the PSA said.
He's calling for a judicial inquiry into the juvenile justice system.
"We need to give our members powers similar to corrective services to deal with these types of situations and to deal with juvenile offenders."
The centre recently saw a two-day rampage by inmates that saw a $300,000 worth of damage caused according to the Daily Telegraph.
Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre is the largest juvenile justice centre in the state with a capacity for 120 young people having opened in 1999 to accommodate men aged between 16-21.