DORCHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – The Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office is investigating recent claims from an inmate about the treatment he received during an inspection of his cell.
Sheriff LC Knight released a video of two incidents in which inmate Russell Dwayne Cole, who is facing drug charges and a murder charge out of Lexington County, claimed detention officers mistreated him back in November.
In the video, you can see Cole outside of his cell. An incident report states the man told officers “I want y’all to put me back in my room,” the officers then grabbed him and forced him into his cell.
The man could be heard yelling “lawsuit” and then telling the officers to hit him repeatedly.
“We had to put him back, so we put him back. I didn’t see them do anything wrong at all. They did exactly what I would’ve done if I had been in that situation,” said Sheriff Knight. “Maybe they kept their cool a little bit better than I would have but again we want to treat them as good as they’ll let us.”
Another incident happened in late December when an inmate, who had been sentenced earlier in the day, attempted suicide by trying to throw himself from a second-floor railing.
He had a towel wrapped around his neck and began to wrap it around the pole at the top of the second floor.
That is when several detention officers surrounded the man so they could grab him as he jumped. Officers were able to call him back for safety; he did not suffer any major injuries.
Officials said the man was on suicide watch for the rest of the day and given a mental evaluation.
Sheriff Knight wanted to release the two videos to show exactly what happened.
“Here are wonderful people working in these places that care about people, and as I said earlier, everybody at the jail – workers and the people that are here for a reason – they’re somebody’s family. We want them to get out and go on with their life.”
Sheriff Knight said in both incidences, he believes things were handled exactly as he would want his detention center staff to handle them.