Plan calls for detectives to handle jail complaints Chief would assign two to Balto. Co. facility

April 15, 1997|By Kris Antonelli | Kris Antonelli,SUN STAFF

A week after a Baltimore County corrections officer was charged with sexually assaulting two female inmates, county police Chief Terrence B. Sheridan said yesterday he wants to assign two detectives to investigate complaints against correctional officers.

Sheridan stopped short of saying that his proposal stemmed from the arrest of correctional Officer Thomas Edward Webb and a separate February investigation into a county police lieutenant who hired work-release inmates.

But he said jail officials had asked for investigative help before and that his proposal would eliminate the need for a formal request.

Jail Administrator James M. Dean Sr., 61, who announced last week that he will retire Sept. 1, said yesterday that Sheridan's proposal had nothing to do with the recent problems at the jail.

"We simply recognize that our staff does not have the kinds of skills that a police officer acquires over the years," he said.

If the proposal is approved in this year's Police Department budget, a sergeant and the two detectives will work out of police headquarters in Towson but will be responsible only for handling employee and inmate complaints from the Detention Center.

Sheridan said he would pay for the additional positions by not filling an $82,000-a-year colonel's position that has been open since Donald Shinnamon, head of the Technical Services Bureau, retired last month.

In January, county police detectives began investigating allegations that Webb, of Glen Rock, Pa., who has worked at the Detention Center for 14 years, had sexually assaulted two female inmates in the women's Detention Center.

On April 9, Webb was charged with two counts of second-degree sex offense, two counts of fourth-degree sex offense and two counts of perverted practices.

In February, police internal affairs detectives began investigating how Lt. George Brooks came to employ four inmates last year at Burdick Security Services, the agency he operated with his wife.

Police spokesman Bill Toohey said Brooks had told the department he would retire this month.

Pub Date: 4/15/97

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.