by Gemma Handy
A prison inmate apparently stabbed by a fellow prisoner during a dispute over access to water has been left paralysed.
Conroy Jones was said to have been washing clothes in the yard at the St John’s-based penal institution when another prisoner attacked him in a bout of fury over the faucet’s low pressure.
Jones was reportedly stabbed in the head and neck with a makeshift knife fashioned from a pair of scissors in the October 30 incident. Damage to his spinal cord means he has no mobility on the left side of his body.
Yesterday, the alleged assailant was charged with attempted murder.
A prison insider told Observer that Jones, a Jamaican national, was yet to receive specialist treatment two weeks after being released from hospital back into 1735.
“He has severe paralysis all the way down his left side and is not being well cared for,” the source claimed. “He has been placed back in a normal cell and has still not seen a specialist.
“He has a wheelchair and he is well liked among the inmates so he has people who help him but he has to have assistance to use the bucket when he needs the bathroom,” the insider added.
However, Prison Superintendent Lieutenant Colonel Eugene Philip denied that Jones’ care had fallen short.
“He has received all his medication and his therapy is set for this month,” he told Observer. “He’s doing well and the Consulate has been visiting him.”
Dr Onika Campbell, Honorary Consul for Jamaica to Antigua and Barbuda, confirmed that she had spoken to Jones’ doctor and was satisfied he was receiving the necessary medical attention.
“His therapy starts on December 8; it couldn’t begin earlier due to the nature of the injury,” she explained. “He has been given a wheelchair and medication. And because he is unable to do his laundry, the prison are doing it for him.
“We have secured regular visits to ensure all protocols and procedures are being followed and we are satisfied in the way in which he is being treated,” Campbell said.
She added that Consulate personnel were due to visit Jones again today, bringing various items to assist his recovery including massage balls which offer therapy.
She said Jones had been confined in the institution for around a decade and was due for release in 2025.