SOUTHAMPTON COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) — The Southampton County Sheriff’s Office says charges are pending after a fire broke out at the county jail Sunday night.
Southampton County Jail officials say the fire — which started around 8 p.m. and sent three inmates and a deputy to the hospital — appeared to have been started in a cell block using batteries, books, playing cards and “some type of fabric.”
The investigation is still underway.
Jail officials gave additional details on the blaze in a news release Monday.
Earlier in the evening, additional deputies were called to the jail because some inmates had damaged water lines in their cell block and caused water to run onto the floor.
Deputies were working to fix the water line issue when the inmates destroyed a camera and broke all the lights in the cell block.
As deputies were working to deal with those ongoing issues, they began to smell smoke coming from the same cell block and discovered an active fire.
Deputies attempted to put the fire out, but could not extinguish it completely. At that point, they called the fire department.
The fire department was able to respond and extinguish the fire.
The inmates in that cell block were moved to another location. Three inmates and a deputy were taken to Southampton Memorial Hospital. All four were released later that night.
The jail nurse also medically screened and cleared the inmates that were not taken to the hospital.
The sheriff’s office also released a statement Monday about the incident:
“We would like to thank all of the responding agencies that assisted with the incident last night. We would especially like to thank the men and women of our office that were working when the incident began and also those that stayed late, came in early or came in on their day off to assist with the situation by transporting inmates to the hospital, to other facilities, and coordinating with and assisting the responding agencies. The quick actions and appropriate response of our deputies was significant in getting the situation under control, securing the necessary resources to help put out the fire and provide medical attention to those in need, and to make sure the facility was safe for all of the inmates who are housed there.”– Southampton County Sheriff’s Office