Jail riot in Bakersfield involves 120 inmates and leaves four hospitalized

Inmates walk through the yard at the Lerdo jail facility in Bakersfield in 2014. A two-hour riot broke out there this week, leaving four inmates hospitalized.
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

A riot at a Bakersfield jail involved 120 inmates and left four of them injured before authorities regained control, the Kern County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday.

The incident started with several disruptive inmates in the Lerdo Pre-Trial Facility’s F-Pod about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday but escalated into a full-blown riot as the inmates began fighting, officials said.

TVs, seats, tables, windows and doors inside the F-Pod housing units were damaged during the two-hour brawl, the Sheriff’s Office said. Four inmates needed to be hospitalized, said Lt. Mark King.


A sheriff’s SWAT team used non-lethal pepper ball rounds to regain control. It took another four hours to search and clear the housing pods and allow the inmates back in, King said.

The cause of the riot is under investigation but it did not appear to be gang-related, King said.

Visitations from friends and family members have been put on hold until at least Thursday.

The facility houses inmates incarcerated for a host of reasons including violent felonies or pending trials.

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