Inmate survives brutal shiv attack at Santa Clara County jail

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- An inmate inside a South Bay jail was stabbed dozens of times. Sheriff's investigators say he was attacked with a make-shift knife known as a shiv or a shank.

Two inmates now face attempted murder charges.

The attack happened in a wing housing inmates accused of murder and attempted murder. A source told ABC7 News one of the alleged attackers is charged in the double murder of two teenagers and that his mother was on the blue ribbon commission for jails.

The Santa Clara County Sheriff's offices say two inmates used the make-shift knife to attack another inmate Sunday morning. The victim was stabbed some 40 times.

"In the head, in his back, in his sides with a manufactured weapon made of some sort of metal material," said Santa Clara County Sheriff's Deputy Reggie Cooks.

Officials say the stabbing was so brutal the blades were bent in the attack.

ABC7 News has learned that one of the suspects is Matthew Clifford. He is awaiting trial in the 2013 shooting deaths of two teenagers behind the Kohl's store on Jackson Avenue.

The other suspect is being held on an attempted murder charge.

"This was a really calculated attack," Cooks said.

The sheriff's office says the suspects and the victim were among 40 high-level offenders who were out of their cells for free time. The attack was recorded by surveillance cameras.

"In this case, officers were able to respond in a timely manner and catch the individuals with the weapons on their person," Cooks added.

Judge Ladoris Cordell is the former chair of San Jose's Blue Ribbon Commission on Jails. She says the stabbing shows the importance of the commission's recommendations. "The recommendation that there be independent civilian oversight in the jails, that there be new leadership in the jails because it's getting a bit old seeing these kinds of things happening again and again," she said.

The suspects in the attack face attempted murder charges. The victim has been treated and is back in custody.
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