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Baltimore Jail’s Warden, Seven Guards Suspended Pending Excessive Force Investigation

Pending an investigation into an alleged use of excessive force involving a female detainee, the warden and seven guards at the Baltimore Central Booking and Intake Center (BCBIC) have been suspended.

The detainee, a 26-year-old woman who faced minor charges, was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries following the January 8, 2011 incident. BCBIC warden Naomi Williams, a major and six guards were placed on administrative leave while the Internal Investigative Unit of the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services conducts an investigation.

Williams has worked at the Baltimore City Jail since 1978 and became BCBIC’s warden in 2008. Assistant warden Carolyn Scruggs will serve as acting warden during the investigation.

In other recent news at the jail, Benjamin F. Brown, 60, deputy commissioner of the pretrial division, was fired in August 2010 and later pleaded guilty to stealing money from arrestees that was contaminated with bodily fluids. Rather than follow the proper procedure of logging the money, placing it in a marked bag and storing it in a secure location, Brown took the cash and buried most of it in a junkyard.

Although Brown denied that he stole the money for personal gain, prosecutors said he “admitted that on several occasions he took some of the cash for his own personal use,” and had shifted funds among several accounts in an apparent attempt to cover up his actions. Brown improperly disposed of approximately $12,500.

In October 2010 he received a six-month suspended sentence, two years’ probation and was ordered to perform 300 hours of community service.

Source: Baltimore Sun

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