8 officers terminated or resigned amidst probe into excessive fo - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

8 officers terminated or resigned amidst probe into excessive force at Elayn Hunt Correctional Center

Elayn Hunt Correctional Center (Source: WAFB) Elayn Hunt Correctional Center (Source: WAFB)
Source: Family Source: Family
Source: Family Source: Family
ST. GABRIEL, LA (WAFB) -

The Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections recommended termination for eight Elayn Hunt Correctional Center officers for use of excessive force on an inmate and the subsequent alleged cover-up of the incident, which occurred back on January 9.

The 9News Investigators brought the story to light when a person who asked to remain anonymous emailed photos of the abuse to our investigative team.

Six of the officers in question resigned in lieu of termination. The department's investigation revealed that some of the officers lied about the incident and attempted to cover it up.

"We will not tolerate this type of behavior. This is a sad day in our department's history. These individuals do not represent 99 percent of our dedicated employees who are committed to public safety and integrity," said DOC secretary James M. Le Blanc.

The initial incident occurred when correctional officers were attempting to remove inmates, John Harold and Lonnie Bryant, from a cell. Officials say when the inmates failed to comply, shift and tactical team leader, Kevin Durbin, got authorization from the compound manager to perform a cell extraction. Durbin deployed the tactical team and ordered the extraction. In violation of department policy, he left before the extraction was complete.

During the extraction, officials say several of the tactical team members lose their tempers and allegedly used excessive force by repeatedly striking Harold. After the incident, the officers failed to fully report what had taken place, and some even lied about what happened. Officers Andre Riley, Charles Philson, and Adrian Almodovar reportedly admitted to using excessive force and also implicated officers Michael Collins, Eric Norwood, and Troy Rogers.

Collins, Norwood, and Rogers all denied participating in the incident.

After the cell extraction, Jarod Verret, the transport driver, took Harold, along with several officers, to the infirmary at Hunt Correctional. The alleged excessive use of force continued at the infirmary in Verret's presence. He, however, denied witnessing any alleged abuse.

Inmates Harold and Bryant receive penalties for violating disciplinary rules, including defiance and aggravated disobediance. Both lost canteen privileges for 12 weeks and were placed in isolation for ten days.

The officers terminated effective March 30 are as follows:

  • Adrian Almodovar of Gonzales:
    • General misconduct
    • Abuse of offenders, corporal punishment, or use of unnecessary or excessive force
    • Malfeasance - aggravated
  • Eric Norwood of St. Gabriel:
    • Abuse of offenders, corporal punishment, or use of unnecessary or excessive force
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements

The officers who were recommended for termination, but instead resigned effective March 30 are as follows:

  • Michael Collins of Baton Rouge:
    • Abuse of offenders, corporal punishment, or use of unnecessary or excessive force
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
  • Kevin Durbin of Geismar:
    • Failure to follow orders - aggravated
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
    • Malfeasance - aggravated
  • Charles Philson of Baton Rouge:
    • Abuse of offenders, corporal punishment, or use of unnecessary or excessive force
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
    • Malfeasance - aggravated
  • Andre Riley of Plaquemine: 
    • Abuse of offenders, corporal punishment, or use of unnecessary or excessive force
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
    • Malfeasance - aggravated

The officers who were recommended for termination, but instead resigned effective April 1 are as follows:

  • Troy Rogers of Harvey:
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
    • Malfeasance - aggravated
  • Jarod Verret of Gretna:
    • Falsifying documents or making false statements
    • Malfeasance - aggravated (2 counts)

RELATED: 6 Hunt corrections officers placed on leave, accused of beating inmate

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