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Prison guards accused of making inmates fight for snacks

Oct. 4, 2013 at 4:06 PM   |   Comments

YORK, Pa., Oct. 4 (UPI) -- Three Pennsylvania corrections officers who have been accused of organizing inmate fights have been suspended pending an investigation.

The three York County Prison officers, identified as David Michael Whitcomb, 28, Mark Andrew Haynes, 26, and Daniel H. Graff, 37, have been placed on unpaid administrative leave while state police investigate the allegations, the York (Pa.) Daily Record reported.

A York County news release Friday said the allegations were made against the officers during another investigation into graffiti at the prison.

"Earlier this year, while conducting an unrelated investigation into pen/marker graffiti and other minor vandalism inside an area of the facility, prison administration learned of possible unprofessional conduct by three corrections officers. Management immediately began an internal investigation," the release said. "Based on evidence obtained during the internal investigation, the three officers were placed on unpaid administrative leave and the matter was turned over to the Pennsylvania State Police for further investigation and possible criminal charges. The York County Prison and its staff actively cooperated with the State Police investigation."

The officers are accused of having inmates fight each other or perform stunts for coffee or snacks.

One inmate alleged that he took part in the "Retard Olympics," organized by officers, and had to perform "stupid stuff for food and coffee." Another inmate said he agreed to be sprayed in the face with pepper spray foam for coffee, which he never received.

All of the officers have denied the allegations.

"I did not participate in any of it, and I did not witness any of this," Whitcomb said. "There is no physical evidence, no medical records. They didn't file any complaints when it was supposed to have happened. This is all on the word of an inmate. It blows my mind."

Graff said Friday that the alleged abuse "never happened."

Topics: State Police
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