Sheriff announces departmental changes after torture of 2 Black men

Court filings indicate that six former law enforcement officers, known as “The Goon Squad,” stun-gunned the men, waterboarded them, then shot one of the men in the mouth.

The sheriff of a predominantly white Mississippi town has announced departmental changes months after police officers known as “The Goon Squad” tortured two Black men.

According to WAPT News, Rankin County Sheriff Bryan Bailey stated that Jeffrey Artis of J. Artis Consulting, who reportedly has 50 years of collective experience with the FBI, helped revise the police department’s patrol policy and procedure handbook.

The Rankin County Sheriff’s Department has also revamped the complaint procedure, which may now be completed online, in person, by phone, or via U.S. Mail. Bailey noted the sheriff’s department recruited an internal affairs investigator to “help foster impartiality and fairness” in the reviews.

Rankin County Mississippi

“This past January, inappropriate conduct from an isolated group of deputies injured citizens in our county and undermined the reputation of this department,” Bailey said in a news release.

Court filings indicate that five former deputies and one former Richland police officer tortured and physically assaulted Michael Jenkins and Eddie Parker at a house in Braxton in January. The officers allegedly stun-gunned the men, waterboarded them, then shot Jenkins in the mouth.

The six former law enforcement officials pleaded guilty to state and federal crimes earlier this year. Sentencing is set for January 2024.

“Once the true facts were discovered, we took immediate action to remove the perpetrators from the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department,” Bailey added, “and they are being dealt with through the legal system.”

Bailey also stated that the Compliance Division is expanding to include more IA investigators so that any “complaints that rise to the level of serious investigation can be dealt with in a timely manner,” WAPT reported.

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