Clearwater, Florida -- Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri has launched an internal affairs investigation into the deaths of two men while in custody back in July.
Sheriff Gualtieri said he believes agency policies were violated in the deaths of Kelly Harding and Thomas Murrow and an in-depth review by Internal Affairs was needed.
On July 6, Thomas Morrow died about two months after being severely injured during transport to the Pinellas County Jail by another detainee, Leonard Lanni, who was drunk and disorderly at the time.
"We intend to determine whether our policies requiring inmate restraint and separation in the transport van were followed -- and to also review our training in this regard," Sheriff Gualtieri said.
On July 21, inmate Kelly Harding was strangled by his cellmate, Scott Greenberg, when Greenberg forced wet toilet paper down Harding's throat. Greenberg has been charged with his murder.
In addition to the death investigation, Sheriff Gualtieri ordered a review of jail booking and classification policies in late July.
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"Based upon what we have learned, these two inmates should never have been housed together," said Gualtieri. "We believe there was a serious lapse in classification policy compliance here. We intend to further investigate the actions of those responsible."
Once the internal investigations are complete, any disciplines handed down will be made public.