Pinellas County deputies suspended after taping derogatory signs to inmates' backs

Two deputies have been suspended after an investigation shows they taped derogatory signs to the backs of inmates at a Florida jail. According to internal reports by the Pinellas County Sheriff's office, the deputies taped signs to the inmates' backs and ordered them to stand with their foreheads against a wall. Deputies then instructed other inmates to read the signs out loud. The reports says Deputies Willie Jordan Jr. and Kenneth Rowe told investigators they did it to humiliate and degrade the inmates in front of other inmates. One of the signs said something to the effect off, "I'm an idiot. I can't stop messing with the guards," Rowe is said to have stated. According to the reports, they will be suspended 240 hours without pay. Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said the suspensions were harsh and signal the officers were close to being fired but were not because they had spotless records before these incidents.
Published: 6:53 PM EDT July 14, 2019
Updated: 6:52 PM EDT July 14, 2019