Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Former Deputy Accused of Forcing Inmate to Rub his Genitals on Another Inmates Sandwich Pleads Guilty

A former deputy accused of forcing an inmate to rub his genitals in a sandwich and then watch another inmate eat it pleaded guilty to two counts Wednesday.

Former deputy Joseph Cantwell, 38, pleaded guilty to two health-code violation counts Wednesday.

He originally was charged with four counts: dereliction of duty, operating without a license, disorderly conduct and health-code violation. The other charges were dropped as a part of the plea deal.

He was given a 90-day sentence, which was suspended, five years of probation and a fine of $500 plus court costs.

Cantwell told the court he was sorry for the shame and embarrassment he caused.

Todd Tripplett, who is in jail on a theft charge, was forced to rub his genitals on another inmate’s sandwich, according to Columbus attorney Byron Potts.

Former deputy Phillip Barnett, 26, also was accused in the incident. Barnett was not charged with a crime.

Both Cantwell and Barnett were dismissed from their duties at the Franklin County Jail in May. They were reassigned to the Franklin County Control Center during the investigation and then both were later fired.

Potts alleged the deputies took cell pictures of the other inmate as he unknowingly ate the alleged sandwich.

Former Officer Mike Rodrigues Accused of Raping Four Women

The ex-wife of a former San Benito County deputy testified Wednesday and said she was raped by her former husband.

The ex-wife of Mike Rodrigues, who is accused of raping four women, was the first person to take the stand during the former sheriff deputy's trial.

Rodrigues has been charged with eight felonies, including three counts of forcible rape, two counts of unlawful sexual penetration and one count of attempted rape, domestic violence and spousal rape.

In his opening statement, Rodrigues' attorney, Art Cantu, said the allegations are false and the alleged victims cried rape only after falling in love with Rodriguez.

Prosecutors, however, said Rodrigues was a predator who preyed on vulnerable women.

The three other alleged victims are expected to take the witness stand. It is unclear whether Rodrigues will take the stand during the trial.

Rodrigues faces life in prison if convicted of all charges.

Former Sheriff Bryan Hill & Wife Charged with Domestic Violence

The former sheriff of Lawrence County has been arrested on a domestic violence charge along with his wife.

Bryan Keith Hill and his wife Angela were both charged for Domestic Violence Third Degree.

Deputies were called to the Hill's home in Moulton where the former sheriff and his wife were involved in a verbal altercation.

Deputies say Hill and wife wife continued their altercation despite commands for them to calm down.

Investigators believe alcohol was a factor in the altercation.

Hill was taken to the Franklin County jail while his wife was locked up in Lawrence County.

Both spend 12 hours in custody to observe a cool-down period.

Bond was set at $1,000 for both.