Former Correctional Officer Convicted of Violating Inmate’s Civil Rights

September 29, 2017

Panama City, FL – This afternoon, after a four-day trial, Willie L. Walker, 58, of Lynn Haven, Florida, was convicted in the U.S. District Court of depriving an inmate of his constitutional rights. The verdict was announced by Christopher P. Canova, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.

In March 2015, Walker, while acting as a correctional officer at the Gulf Correctional Institution, assaulted an inmate, resulting in bodily injury. The government presented evidence that, during his career as a correctional officer, Walker had assaulted at least four inmates. In this case, the testimony demonstrated that Walker sprayed the inmate with a chemical agent and then struck him repeatedly, resulting in a fractured nose and head wound, which required several staples. In an attempt to establish that he had acted in self-defense, Walker planted a homemade weapon or “shank.”

Walker faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

The sentencing hearing is scheduled for December 14, 2017, at 11:00 a.m. at the United States Courthouse in Panama City.

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