AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Richmond County Sheriff Richard Roundtree spoke on Wednesday morning after the arrests of two of his jailers on Tuesday.
Deputies Gerardo Sanchez Jr. and Joshua Jackson are charged with simple battery and violation of oath of office after being accused of assaulting inmate Alvin Yarbary Jr. Both have been terminated.
Yarbary filed the complaint last week to staff at the Charles B. Webster Detention Center, and there’s video evidence that shows it.
“Two deputies responded to what was put out as an emergency medical assistance call. When they arrived, they found the inmate, who had a history of faking medical calls, lying on the floor,” Sheriff Roundtree said at the news conference.
The video attached of the jailers assaulting the inmate is graphic, and could be disturbing to some viewers.
Yarbary did not sustain major injuries.
“Here at the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, we feel that no one is above the law,” Sheriff Roundtree said. “And while we take no pride in locking up one of our own, we will not hesitate to do so if the situation warrants it.”
He said that this makes 12 employees arrested over the last year, and six of them were for use of excessive force.
He also said that this string of incidents shows a lack of proper training for the agency’s 700+ employees.
“As the leader of this agency, this responsibility falls on me. I have directed the senior leadership at this agency to identify any gaps in training or culture, that may have attributed to this many incidents,” he said.
And they will be taking other steps to prevent this from happening again.
“We’ve also consulted with our in-house counselor to see if we can identify any warning signs that may have been missed, or that we can look at to identify if a deputy may be in crisis, or going through personal issues,” Sheriff Roundtree said.
He wants to implement these changes within the next 30 days.