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Charlotte Amalie
Monday, July 22, 2024


Convicted murderer Bradley "Hurtie" Maxwell is one of several violent criminals expected to be housed in a Virginia prison when negotiations between the Virgin Islands Justice Department and the Commonwealth of Virginia are completed.
Attorney General Iver Stridiron has been negotiating with officials in Virginia hoping to strike an agreement to house the more violent inmates off-island, including some that are to be returned to the territory from federal prisons on the mainland.
"I think the community understands the risks associated with Bradley Maxwell, given the fact that he has escaped twice from prisons on St. Thomas and St. Croix," Stridiron said.
Stridiron said he will discuss the transfer of Maxwell and others with the Director of Prisons and will be guided by that information when making his decision to transfer inmates from the territory.
"I am very concerned about any inmate who escapes, because the safety of the community is compromised," he said, adding "it's my intention to remove any inmate from the Virgin Islands who poses a threat to the safety of the community."
The return of inmates adjudicated here, but housed in the federal prison system, has been forced by the territory's inability to continue paying the Federal Bureau of Prisons to house them. Dozens of inmates were sent off-island following damage to the Golden Grove Correctional Facility by Hurricane Hugo in 1989.
Federal prisons were to hold them for less than a year while the prison was repaired. But the bill over the years shot up to more than $10 million, a debt which the territory is hoping to have forgiven.
Stridiron said this week most of the returning inmates will be housed in the territory, but he anticipated that some are too hardened for the local facility. "We hoping to keep the number of inmates we will transfer to 10, but we will not hesitate too remove them if they pose a threat," he said.
Noting that the cost of housing prisoners in Virginia and in the Virgin Islands are about the same, he said there is no loss by sending the more hardened criminals off-island. "We would prefer to keep them all here, but that will not be the case because of the nature of some of these men," Stridiron said.
The attorney general anticipated having a contract in place with Virginia officials within the next three to four weeks.

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