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Prison hunger strike ends

October 13, 2011 |  4:56 pm

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This post has been corrected. See the bottom for details

The latest hunger strike in state prisons has ended, according to prisoner advocates and California corrections officials.

At its peak, more than 4,000 inmates up and down the state were refusing meals in prisons from the Salton Sea to Pelican Bay. The strike, which began Sept. 26, followed one in July over conditions in the system's high-security Security Housing Unit.

Activists working with prisoners said Thursday that the strike largely was resolved by prison officials' promise to review the cases of all inmates moved to the SHU because they were identified as gang members. But Terry Thornton, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said "I don't think we've gotten to that level yet."

She said inmates instead were simply briefed on the review of the SHU policies that the department has been conducting since May, and agreed to end their strike. The new policies should be released publicly in the coming months, Thornton added.

-Nicholas Riccardi in Sacramento

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 Photo: Pelican Bay State Prison. Credit: Rich Pedroncelli/Associated Press

For the record: 5:24 p.m., Oct. 13: A previous version of this post erroneously stated that the hunger strike broke out in a prison in the Tehachapis.

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