More than a dozen prisoners at the Wynne Unit in Huntsville are on hunger strike in response to a lockdown following a rash of feces-throwing incidents, according to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Seventeen of the 156 inmates on lockdown started refusing food in Friday, and are being regularly checked by medical staff.
News of the hunger strike comes less than a day after a seven-hour jailhouse brawl in South Carolina that killed seven and became the worst prison riot in a quarter century, according to the Associated Press.
In Texas, the latest disciplinary lockdown began in response to an uptick in infractions, including verbal abusiveness toward officers and "chunking," or throwing bodily fluids.
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One inmate tossed feces at a guard, and a number of prisoners tossed feces wrapped in newspaper out into common areas while the unit was on medical restriction and there were no janitors.
The alleged bad behavior comes less than a week after an Telford Unit inmate was hit with a life sentence in response to a chunking incident.
"The offenders say they are protesting a lockdown of their housing area for disciplinary reasons," said spokesman Jeremy Desel.
The prisoners locked down at the 2,625-inmate Wynne Unit are all G4 classification, which can often mean they’ve had a history of disciplinary violations.
In late December, a group of about 45 inmates at the Allred Unit in north Texas went on hunger strike, citing complaints over recreational time and food portions and temperature. The action ended in early January, though it wasn’t clear if anything was done to address the complaints.