Crossword Genius

Commotion starts in showers, then inmates riot (4)

Ross

I believe the answer is:

stir

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Here is my best explanation:

'commotion' is the definition.
(stir is a kind of commotion)

'starts in showers then inmates riot' is the subsidiary indication.
'starts in' suggests taking the first letters.
The initial letters of 'showers then inmates riot' is 'stir'.

Ross

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This clue was last seen in The Times

(Other definitions for stir that I've seen before include "fuss", "Arouse; mix", "Whisk or make a move", "Mix around", "Commotion; agitate", "Whisk or mix", "Prison (slang) - disturbance", "Move; wake", "Whisk or rotate" and "move around".)

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