Bloody carnage: How the NSW juvie prison riot unfolded

ARMED with broom handles and metal bars, seven of the state's most violent young boys and men bashed, stabbed and "violated the private parts" of their cell mates.

In one of the bloodiest riots to break out in the state's juvenile justice centre, detainees at the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre plotted to "create carnage" in retaliation for being locked too long in their rooms.

A preliminary report into the Sunday night riot has blamed a staff shortage for the detainees being kept in their cells longer than normal, which triggered two brawls.

The first attacks were on sex offenders, with one detainee who is in custody for allegedly stabbing and raping a woman now in a critical condition after being stabbed in the back and head.

Blood and property damage inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre following the riot.
Blood and property damage inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre following the riot.

As authorities battled to gain control of the rioting men and boys, a second fight erupted between members of the rival Greater Western and Inner Western Brotherhood gangs after they were let out of their units.

Five of the alleged rioters have been thrown into an adult prison, including a detainee The Sunday Telegraph revealed earlier this year had allegedly stolen money from a surf life saving club during an excursion.

Another 20 have been relocated to Cobham Juvenile Justice Centre in Western Sydney.

The melee follows almost two years of unrest, with a detainee sexually assaulted in a detention centre swimming pool, a convicted rapist let out on a public beach, multiple staff assaults and thousands of dollars of damage.

Rioters caused severe damage inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre.
Rioters caused severe damage inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre.

On December 17, Public Service Association members at the Cobham Juvenile Justice Centre passed a vote of no-confidence in the executive team.

This was later adopted at other centres.

As police investigations continue, it can be revealed an officer first raised concerns of possible unrest around 7.30pm Sunday after noticing a group of detainees whispering.

A staff shortage had meant the offenders had been locked up longer in their cells than usual, something they made known to the officer.

The staff member called for help but it was too late.

 

 

The group of seven - each serving time for violent and aggravated robberies and drug offences - flipped a table and converted its metal frame into individual weapons that they used to smash lights, surveillance cameras, windows and a phone box.

As officers tried to lock up other detainees in their cells to prevent them from joining the melee, one of the perpetrators swiped the metal bar he was holding towards a staff member in an attempt to break free the keys she was wearing.

Riot police lead a detainee away in handcuffs during a riot at the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre on July 22. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi
Riot police lead a detainee away in handcuffs during a riot at the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre on July 22. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi

He failed but a second attempt on another officer is successful.

As he ran to release other detainees, the offender was heard yelling: "Boys, I've got the keys."

The officers were told by a colleague watching the security monitors that the detainees gained access to a horticulture shed filled with gardening equipment, including a chainsaw and whipper snipper, which they started up.

Another officer saw the detainees with knives.

Some of the weapons used during the riot included tennis rackets and metal bars.
Some of the weapons used during the riot included tennis rackets and metal bars.

Other detainees joined the group, with around 20 scaling the roof of a building - one of those involved has been in at least five other "roof incidents" since being detained.

At 9.30pm, The Sunday Telegraph received a message from inside: "Frank Baxter is having a major incident right now, detainees have staff keys and letting other prisoners out, they have gotten into maintenance shed and have chainsaws and other implements, staff are so frightened we escaped."

 

TIMELINE OF EVENTS OF JUVIE

 

 

A riot squad armed with shields evacuated staff from the centre as the group moved in to a unit housing sex offenders where they bashed, stabbed and "violated" the genitalia of the inmates "to the point seven need to go to hospital", an officer at the scene said.

One of the detainees is rushed to intensive care after being stabbed.

A second brawl broke out after staff moving other detainees away from the melee accidentally mixed members of rival gangs who are usually kept separated.

The fight is only stopped after police used pepper spray.

Staff said just 50 teenagers remain in Frank Baxter, with more than 100 now at Cobham.

An insider said the newly transferred inmates were already this week "agitating" their new cellmates to "spread the carnage".

"I can confirm that several experienced staff informed centre management that they suspected a serious incident would be imminent," one officer said.

The officer claimed their concerns were dismissed by management.

Four of the alleged Sunday rioters appeared in Gosford Local Court on Tuesday facing one count each of rioting, with a fifth to appear tomorrow.

None of the offenders applied for bail, which was formally refused.

The destruction inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre.
The destruction inside the Frank Baxter Juvenile Justice Centre.
The knives believed to have been stolen from the kitchen during the riot.
The knives believed to have been stolen from the kitchen during the riot.
Riot police with a police dog during the riot. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi
Riot police with a police dog during the riot. Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi