The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction recently announced that it is implementing a plan to purchase and deploy more than 5,000 body cameras on all its guards and parole officers. It is one of the largest deployments of body cameras in the world and it is designed to hold officers accountable.
Ohio prisons have notoriously been plagued with an increasing number of incidents involving excessive force and sexual abuse by guards. It is not a coincidence that this project is being implemented after an inmate at an Ohio prison died when prison guards pulled him from his cell, got into a fight with him, and then refused to provide lifesaving medical care. Part of the assault was caught on camera verifying the conduct – which led to the guards and medical staff being terminated. It also follows an incident where Chillicothe prison guards beat and paralyzed a young inmate and then laughed and bragged in text messages about how good it felt to have broken his neck and played a role in paralyzing him. The State of Ohio agreed to pay the former inmate $17.5 million for what the guards did.
There is no dispute that law enforcement and corrections officers put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe and the vast majority of them are professional and upstanding officers who protect civil rights. But there is also no dispute that there are some that dishonor the profession by betraying their power and the public’s trust. Holding these bad actors accountable is the only way to change the system.
Our firm investigates and brings legal action against individuals and organizations who violate civil rights laws. If you have suffered serious injury or were sexually abused by law enforcement, contact us to see how we might be able to help.