Moment 20-stone prisoner went on rampage that took 100 riot officers to stop

This is the dramatic moment an inmate weighing nearly 20 stone attacked prisoner officers during an eight-hour "rampage" that took 100 prison officers in riot gear to stop.

Inmate John Onyemaechi, who is serving a double life sentence, went on the massive rampage at HMP Full Sutton, one of the UK's most secure jails, on August 9 last year.

Officers were forced to throw pyrotechnics and use pepper spray to distract the convict as they attempted to bring him under control during the riot.

Footage shown in court this week shows Onyemaechi hitting an officer over the head with a pan from behind while he was unlocking a gate.

His keys were still in the lock as the inmate repeatedly struck him, causing the key chain to snap as the officer slumped down.

The prisoner then struck out at other staff, and is said to have hit a female officer and narrowly missed another.

As the fight broke out, another inmate is said to have removed the keys from the lock and placed them in a bin, where Onyemaechi later retrieved them.

Onyemaechi also started a fire in a kitchen, in which he put cloth, magazines and then a chair, and was seen laughing at the fire on CCTV.

Staff were forced to put out the fire with a mobile appliance after breaking a window.

Following the eight-hour spree, he was finally restrained after running across netting between two landings and falling through.

The convict caused £15,000 of damage after starting two fires and attacking officers with an improvised weapon as well as the "heavy" pan.

The Prison Mutiny Act also had to be read over the tannoy "instructing all prisoners to return to their cells" during the incident.

Onyemaechi was jailed at the Old Bailey in 2011 for a minimum of 25 years for two offences of attempted murder, attempting to wound to resist lawful apprehension, robbery, and wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm.

During his hearing for the August 9th attack earlier this month at Hull Crown Court, Anthony Dunne, prosecuting, said in the days leading up to the outbreak staff had become "increasingly concerned" about his behaviour.

"His size and demeanour made him intimidating to prison staff and other prisoners," Mr Dunne said.

Concerns had led to a discussion with the custodial manager on Echo Wing, where Onyemaechi was held, about him being transferred, which caused him to become "agitated" and "upset his behaviour was being challenged in this way".

Trouble began when Onyemaechi asked to go into a "sterile" area on the wing where cooking and cleaning equipment was kept. About ten minutes of CCTV from inside the jail was played in court, some of which is shown in the video above.

Onyemaechi told one officer: "Get off this landing now or I'm going to kill you," – the first of two death threats he made.

He then smashed a window, which caused facial injuries to another officer and injured a third officer when he "lashed out" with a 10cm screw or nail.

As well as the fire in the kitchen, he started another blaze, which led the prison service to escalate the incident to national level, leading to 100 officers attending in "full personal protective" equipment.

After restraining him, the inmate was taken to the segregation unit.

The custodial manager on the wing, who had 20 years experience, said it was "the most frightening experience she had ever witnessed".

Among the injuries to those involved in the initial disturbance were two broken bones in an officer's right hand, which left him unable to help his wife with their nine-week-old baby.

Onyemaechi admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm, four counts of common assault,  two of making threats to kill, affray, and arson being reckless as to whether life is endangered.

Anya Lewis, for Onyemaechi, who appeared over a video link from HMP Woodhill in Milton Keynes, said he had been concerned about the effect of a prescribed steroid on his mood, and had raised this before and after the incident, when he said he did not want to take it again.

Onyemaechi was jailed for a further 81 months to be served after his 25-year sentence.

Judge David Tremberg told him: "You are clearly a powerful man, you went on the rampage and you cared little for your own safety, let alone that of others."

Onyemaechi can only be released when the parole board deems he is no longer a danger to the public.

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