Former Alabama Prison Guard Sentenced for Assaulting Inmates
The Justice Department says a former Alabama Dept. of Corrections prison sergeant has been sentenced after pleading guilty to assaulting two inmates at Elmore Correctional Facility.
Ulysses Oliver Jr., 47, has been sentenced in federal court to 30 months of imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.
According to court documents, on Feb. 16, 2019, Oliver went to an observation room holding the two inmates, who were handcuffed and sitting quietly. Oliver pulled the first inmate into a hallway, where he struck the victim multiple times with his fists and feet, and then used his collapsible baton to strike the victim approximately nineteen times.
Court documents say Oliver returned to the observation room and pulled the second victim into the hallway. Oliver kicked the second victim and used his baton to strike the victim approximately ten times.
The Justice Department says during the assaults, the inmates were handcuffed behind their backs, did not resist and posed no threat.
Afterward, Oliver returned to the observation room where the victims were being held and shoved the tip of his baton into the face of one of the victims, lacerating the victim’s face.
Oliver assaulted the victims as punishment because he believed that the victims had brought contraband into the facility, according to court documents. Other correctional officers did not intervene.
Former correctional officers Bryanna Mosley and Leon Williams pleaded guilty in 2019 to failing to intervene. Former correctional lieutenant Willie Burks, who was the shift commander during the incident, was convicted by a federal jury in 2021 of failing to intervene to stop Oliver from assaulting the second inmate.
“The ADOC has zero tolerance for violence within its facilities, including excessive use-of-force by staff. Excessive use-of-force is not acceptable under any circumstances, and preventing these incidents is a high priority for the Department,” said Chief Law Enforcement Officer Arnaldo Mercado of the Alabama Department of Corrections Law Enforcement Services Division. “When an allegation of excessive force is made, or an incident of such nature is reported or discovered, the Department conducts a thorough investigation. Employees who are found to have violated the highest standards of law enforcement, to which the ADOC is steadfastly committed, will be referred for prosecution and the LESD will support prosecution to the full extent of the law.”
This case was investigated by the FBI’s Mobile Division and ADOC’s Law Enforcement Services Division. Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric Counts of the Middle District of Alabama and Trial Attorney David Reese of the Civil Rights Division prosecuted the case.
— Information from U.S. Department of Justice