Welcome to the “new” and “transformed” USA. On Tuesday, Politico reported that a January 6 Capitol riot defendant held prisoner at a D.C. jail was allegedly zip-tied, beaten by correctional officers, and left blinded in one eye.
According to the report, Capitol riot defendant Ryan Samsel, “was severely beaten by correctional officers, [is now] blind in one eye, has a skull fracture and detached retina,” said Ronald Sandlin, another defendant in the riot, who told U.S. District Court Judge Dabney Friedrich that he and others being held now fear for their lives.
Steven Metcalf, a lawyer for Samsel, said that after his client complained last month about slow delivery of toilet paper, he was zip-tied, moved to a cell outside the view of surveillance cameras and brutally beaten by guards.
“I have seen Ryan. He has two black eyes to this day, two weeks later. All the skin is ripped off both wrists, which shows the zip ties and how tight they were,” said Metcalf, also from New York. “Other inmates said his face looked like a tomato that was stomped on.”
“We intend on filing a lawsuit against the two specific guards and the facility responsible for this scenario because Ryan Samsel did not deserve to get targeted and treated like this,” Metcalf added.
Another attorney for Samsel, Elisabeth Pasqualini, said that her client was moved to another “undisclosed” location earlier on Tuesday and that the episode in which he was injured last month was under investigation by the FBI
Sandlin also accused correctional officers of blatant racism and racial tension between the guards and the defendants.
“I hate all white people and your honky religion,” one guard allegedly said, according to Sandlin.
“Myself and others involved in the Jan. 6 incident are scared for their lives, not from each other but from correctional officers,” Sandlin told Judge Friedrich. “I don’t understand how this is remotely acceptable.”
Welcome to the new and transformed America.
“There is a pattern of abuse and of targeting of the defendants who are being held pursuant to what happened on Jan. 6,” said Joseph McBride of New York, a defense lawyer for Barnett. “It is targeted. It is ruthless. It is nonstop.”
And it’s totally and completely unacceptable. But apparently, THIS is what now passes for “due process” in Biden’s America.
A lawyer for Capitol riot defendant Ryan Samsel says he zip-tied and beaten by a CO at the DC jail on March 21.
The lawyer says the DOC and FBI are looking into the incident. pic.twitter.com/R3M8lk8zMg
— Alan Feuer (@alanfeuer) April 6, 2021
“For anyone inclined to think as a charged ‘Capitol Rioter,’ Mr. Samsel got what he deserved, I say get down from your mountain top, the hypocrisy in that air is distorting your vision,” Elisabeth Pasqualini, an attorney for Samsel, said in a statement. “Either we live in a democracy that believes in due process and equal justice before the law or we do not.”
Apparently, we do not.
Pasqualini said her client has been moved to an “undisclosed” location and the episode is under investigation by the FBI. One can only hope the FBI handles the case properly, but these days, we’re not holding our breath.
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