Prison hooch suspected in botulism outbreak

November 26, 2012

Seven Arizona inmates have been hospitalized with suspected botulism poisoning. KJZZ's Jude Joffe-Block reports the culprit is believed to be homemade alcohol the inmates drank.

JUDE JOFFE-BLOCK: Over the weekend, seven inmates at the State Prison Complex in Florence fell ill. Pinal County spokeswoman Heather Murphy says their symptoms, which included muscle weakness, and difficulty speaking and breathing, pointed to botulism poisoning.

HEATHER MURPHY: All signs lead to the fact that they may have consumed some homemade prison hooch that they make from fermented fruit

JOFFE-BLOCK: Or in other words, homemade alcohol. All seven inmates have been treated with the anti-toxin for botulism, though their recovery is expected to take quite some time. The same prison experienced a botulism outbreak as recently as August.

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