Four inmates escape cell, stab man, officials say

Several Norteño gang members broke free of their cell and attacked an inmate worker Monday night at the Merced County Jail, officials said, an ordeal that some think is a result of lowered staffing at the jail.

The brutal attack also involved correctional officer Chris Navarro, president of the Merced County Sheriff's Employee Association, who was escorting the 28-year-old inmate worker through the cell block when the attack happened.

As they were delivering sweat shirts to inmates in Cell Block 3 about 10:30 p.m., Navarro heard "the scuffling of feet and movement of bodies" before he turned to see four inmates running toward him and the inmate worker, according to a jail incident report.  More