AUSTIN (December 2, 2012)--Eleven inmates have been killed this year inside Texas state's prisons, the highest number in at least 15 years.
The Austin American Statesman reported Sunday that last year, three inmates were killed and that this year's total is the highest since 1997, when 10 were killed.
Officials say the increase is puzzling because overall violence, as well as sexual assaults and the number of weapons found in prisons statewide, have all declined in 2012.
Investigations into individual cases have shown that the homicides appear to be random acts of spontaneous violence between cellmates with no apparent pattern, so officials aren't attributing the increase to convicts are serving longer sentences or to staffing shortages at some facilities.
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