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Justice Department Inclined to Close Alcatraz

June 17, 1962 - One result of the prison break last Monday at Alcatraz has been the renewal of the Justice Department’s interest in closing down the Federal prison on “The Rock,” as the tiny island north of San Francisco is sometimes called. This is a political as much as an administrative question for Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy and James V. Bennett, director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Mr. Kennedy said today, “I think we’d be inclined to close it.” In the investigation of the escape by Frank L. Morris and John and Clarence Anglin, the general debilitation of the prison has been called to official attention. Mr. Bennett said it would cost roughly $5 million to modernize the place, to provide proper facilities for the staff, to improve the power and sewage-disposal plants, and to build new quarters for Bureau of Prisons personnel.

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