Larned prison cancels visits to inmates to combat drug use

A state prison in western Kansas is not allowing inmates to have visitors this weekend in hopes of combatting the flow of contraband drugs that are being blamed for a death there.

Department of Corrections spokeswoman Jeanny Sharp said Friday that the Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility is trying to determine how drugs are getting into the institution and visitors are one possible source.

Four inmates died at three prisons in late April, including one in Larned. Corrections officials believe all the deaths were tied to contraband drugs, though they are not sure specifically what substances.

Sharp said another Larned inmate was hospitalized this week, and 20 Larned inmates have been found to be under the influence of drugs during the past 30 days.

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