By Cynthia Davis
Per the Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC): A murder took place at Ely State Prison on the morning of July 11th. Inmate Michael Rumble, age 29, was pronounced deceased after being stabbed with “shanks” (weapons made by inmates from metal and additional material) by two other inmates who may have been affiliated with the Aryan Warriors, also known as the “A-DUBS” or the AW.
Booking information for Michael Karl Rumble shows his troubles began in 2015 with burglary and carrying a concealed weapon in Clark County. He completed this sentence and was currently serving time at Ely State Prison (ESP) for another burglary committed in Washoe County. Inmate Rumble was set to be released in August 2023 which was within 30-days of his demise.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Aryan Warriors make up an extremely low percentage of the entire prison population, but are responsible for a large number of prison murders in Nevada. Inside prison walls the gang’s focus and endeavors include drug trafficking, gambling, extortion, inmate prostitution, and murder-for-hire. On the outside add armed robbery, counterfeiting, forgery, identity theft, and firearms trafficking.
This incident is yet another reminder of not only staff shortages. Governor Lombardo has said addressing state agencies’ staff vacancy rates will be a priority of his administration.
NDOC Director, James Dzurenda (during his 2016-2019 tenure) ended the use of lethal capabilities inside the walls of Nevada prisons. An outside group that reviewed Nevada’s use-of-force practices recommended that the NDOC move away from shotguns and try to de-escalate violent situations in other ways.
The Corrections Officer position, over the years, has unfortunately become a thankless job for the men and women who put their lives on the line everyday in the name of public safety. For an outside group to recommend no shotguns, with the Director in agreement, and without including “EXCEPT for the use in officer and staff protection” it might suggest a sympathetic political ploy from the left. But where is the advocacy and sympathy for the officers, medical staff, educational workers, and other “free-staff” personnel who are left without viable means to protect themselves or each other while the advantage is clearly with the inmates?
Although it is tragic that inmate Michael Rumble was murdered, the community should be thankful that a correctional officer wasn’t murdered in a set-up initiated by violent inmates to attack staff or capture the institution. How easy it could be to stab an officer instead of a rival inmate when the officer has no lethal capability, i.e. shotgun, mini-14, or any type of firearm for protection. One would argue it is only a matter of time that an outside group suggests more units be allowed out to mingle at Ely State Prison, which is the only maximum security prison in Nevada built for the most violent of offenders.