COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) – South Carolina Department of Corrections officials said Thursday that they moved Death Row to Broad River Correctional Insitution from Kirkland Correctional Institution.
According to the release, a unit was built in 1988 at Broad River to house Death Row inmates.
“This move will address some of the concerns raised in a recent lawsuit filed on behalf of the Death Row inmates,” SCDC officials said in the release. “Space at Broad River was freed up when the Department of Mental Health’s Sexually Violent Predator unit was moved to a new DMH facility on the Broad River campus. For most of the Death Row inmates, the new unit will operate more like a general population dorm. They will not interact with the general population at Broad River.”
According to the release, most of the inmates will have jobs on the unit, which includes serving meals, cleaning the common areas, laundry or assisting fellow inmates with disabilities.
Inmates will also have the opportunity to worship together in services coordinated by the institution chaplain.
SCDC officials said Thursday’s move went smoothly and was finished before noon.
“The inmates packed their rooms this morning and the items were searched and inventoried. They carried their bags to the buses and boarded them for the short ride to Broad River,” from the release. “All movement on the prison complex was stopped until the inmates were secured inside the new unit, and the S.C. Law Enforcement Division helicopter watched from above. Both institutions are behind the security gate that faces Broad River Road, and there was no chance for interaction with the general public.”
According to the release, staff who worked on Death Row at Kirkland transferred to Broad River.
Currently, South Carolina has 38 inmates on Death Row. One of the inmates is incarcerated in California for crimes committed there.
“We are glad to be able to return this unit to its original purpose,” SCDC Director Bryan Stirling said.