by Steve Horn
On April 5, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that a lawsuit over the death of 33-year-old Charles “Jason” Toll – a prisoner who died in 2010 after being forcibly removed from his solitary confinement cell at the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution (RMSI) in Nashville, Tennessee – should be remanded for another trial.
The Court of Appeals concluded that a February 2011 resignation letter written by William Amonette, an RMSI guard who had participated in the cell extraction involving Toll, should have been disclosed during the discovery process in the suit. Amonette’s resignation letter, first reported by The New York Times in July 2014, centered around his belief that his concerns about the handling of Toll’s case were brushed aside by upper-level prison brass.
Amonette further wrote in his letter that he felt he did not receive the proper number of training hours needed to carry out cell extractions, and that he was asked to lie on a document saying he had completed the proper training.
“This is falsification of training records,” he wrote. “With the extenuating allegations surrounding proper officer training, I felt it necessary to make ...