9 Roxbury Maryland Correctional Officers Fired After Inmate Beatings

HAGERSTOWN, MD – Nine officers at Roxbury Correctional Institution were fired Friday by the state prison agency in a continuing investigation of alleged brutality against inmates at two institutions.

No criminal charges have been filed, according to a release from the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

The agency announced March 14 that eight officers had been recommended for termination for their alleged involvement in the beating of an inmate March 8 and 9 at the medium-security facility that houses about 1,750 inmates.

The fired officers include at least one supervisor – a lieutenant – and a number of lower-ranking officers, said Steve Berger, western Maryland union representative for the American Federation of State, Municipal and County Employees. He said the union will represent the officers in appeals.

Berger declined to identify the officers. Mark Vernarelli, a spokesman for the state Division of Correction, said he didn’t know their names.

“Just as we cannot tolerate violence against our staff, we cannot accept inappropriate behavior committed by our staff. Any allegation that is substantiated will result in fast and decisive action,” Public Safety Secretary Gary D. Maynard said.

Eight officers at the maximum-security North Branch Correctional Institution near Cumberland, Md., remain on administrative leave with pay pending disciplinary proceedings stemming from alleged assaults on seven inmates there March 6.

Maynard added that “99 percent of our officers are outstanding, and we should not judge them based upon the actions of a few.”

Berger said the officers had been treated unfairly.

“Unlike all the private citizens in this country who are innocent until proven guilty, the system in Maryland is that the officers are guilty until proven innocent,” Berger said.

Ronald E. Smith, labor relations specialist with the Maryland Classified Employees Association, a smaller labor union, said his organization represents one of the fired officers.

Smith said a lieutenant was fired for allegedly destroying a videotape

source: http://www.herald-mail.com/?cmd=displaystory&story_id=190422&format=html

One Response

  1. so sadd i fear for my son life he is currently in that prison in hagerstown and the CO harrass him on a daily basis..they are racist. god forbid they harm him …lord no i have a damn good lawyer and the lord on my hands i pray for all those inmates that get attack for no reason and the CO do what they want and get away with it….i speak the truth and hagerstown a racist only white jail no african amercians work there…rednecks that hate blacks…so sadd…

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