Arkansas sheriff convicted of oppressing 2 jail inmates

August 10, 2021 GMT

FORT SMITH, Ark. (AP) — A federal jury on Monday found an Arkansas sheriff guilty of violating the rights of two people in his custody by assaulting them.

The verdict came after trial evidence showed Franklin County Sheriff Anthony Boen used unreasonable force to punish pretrial detainees on two separate occasions.

Trial evidence showed that on Nov. 21, 2018, Boen pushed a detainee onto the floor and grabbed his hair beard during an interrogation. It also showed that on Dec. 3, 2018, he punched a detainee multiple times while he was shackled to a bench inside Franklin County jail and not resisting.

Boen was acquitted on a third count.

Boen faces up to 20 years in prison, but no sentencing date has been set. In an email, defense attorney Russell Wood said he and his client “are very disappointed in the verdict of the jury but respect the duty that each member of the jury performed.”

A message to Franklin County officials was not immediately returned.