Two former correction officers from Beaumont, Texas conspired together to assault an inmate.

According to a press release from the United States Department of Justice, Tavoris Bottley, 35, was sentenced today to 18 months in federal prison for the assault of an inmate that took place in 2017 at the Federal Correctional Complex.

“When correctional officers abuse their authority like this, it hurts more than the victim of the assault,” said U.S. Attorney Joseph Brown of the Eastern District of Texas. “It damages the whole system, hurting the credibility of the good officers who try to do the right thing every day. We will do everything we can to make sure these kinds of violations are prosecuted.”

Bottley was instructed and assisted by former Lieutenant Khristal Ford, 32, to assault an inmate who is only identified as A.A. Previously, the inmate allegedly had been disrespectful and thrown a food plate, but at the time of the assault he posed no threat.

A.A. was being held in a medical observation cell when Ford opened the cell and told Bottley to "take care of it." Ford then watched as Bottley punched A.A. in the head three times. Afterwards, Ford submitted a report that excluded any reference to the punches, and she also attached a fictitious breathalyzer photo sheet to insinuate that the inmate was highly intoxicated and therefore not credible at the time of the assault.

Ford was sentenced on Jan. 8, 2020 to 24 months in prison for her role in the assault.

“This type of behavior in our correctional officers erodes public trust,” said Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband of the Civil Rights Division. “The Department of Justice will vigorously prosecute those who violate the civil rights of inmates.”

While I'm happy to see justice served, I know that there are more horror stories like these that have yet to be heard. Do you think the Department of Justice will see more of these cases in the near future?

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