After pleading guilty to using excessive force against a pretrial detainee, a former Louisiana corrections officer was recently sentenced to 11 months in federal prison.
On June 14, 2018, a pretrial detainee identified only as “K.F.” began banging on the door of his locked holding cell at the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office (RPSO), Detention Center 1, in Alexandria, Louisiana. Due to the fact that K.F. was naked, Officer Dominic Davidson put on a pair of rubber gloves before entering the inmate’s cell and abruptly attacking K.F. without legal justification.
According to plea documents, Davidson immediately shoved the inmate to the floor before striking him repeatedly in the head and torso. At no point before, during, or after the assault did K.F. pose a threat to himself or others.
In June, Davidson pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of violating the civil rights of an inmate in his custody. On Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Dee Drell sentenced him to 11 months in federal prison, followed by one year of supervised release.
“Physical, violent, and unjustified abuse by members of our law enforcement community is unlawful,” stated Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband for the Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department is dedicated to ensuring that no one in this country is above the law and will continue to prosecute anyone who uses a position of power illegally to violate the civil rights of others.”
“Correctional officers have a sworn duty to ensure that inmates are protected, rather than abused,” Acting U.S. Attorney Alexander Van Hook for the Western District of Louisiana said in a recent statement. “The abuse of authority by this law enforcement officer and the violation of the inmate’s civil rights will not be tolerated.”
“Along with our partners, the FBI will aggressively investigate allegations wherein correctional officers abuse their position of power and authority over prisoners to deny them their constitutional right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment,” asserted FBI Special Agent in Charge Bryan Vorndran. “The law suffers the most when those in a position of trust abuses their power. The FBI is appreciative of its partnerships with the Rapides Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Attorney’s office of the Western District of Louisiana and the trial attorneys from the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.”