Police: Inmates follow detention officer while performing lewd acts

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ATLANTA —

Channel 2 Action News has learned two officers are under investigation after a security breach at the Fulton County Jail, which houses some of the most dangerous suspects in metro Atlanta.

“Basically, the main thing that concerns us is that there's been a breach of security we believe and also a safety issue for our staff,” Fulton County Sheriff’s Lt. Col. Reginald Turner said.

Turner told Channel 2’s Mark Winne the jail’s seventh floor north area is where the particularly dangerous offenders are. He said on Wednesday, two prisoners got into an area restricted from them and followed a female detention officer down a hallway performing lewd acts. Twice, they tried to grab her, Turner said.

“We're blessed that officer was not seriously injured,” he said.

Turner said the female officer in Wednesday’s incident conducted herself well, calmly fending them off and using a laundry cart to create separation. Now, Turner said, two other officers are under investigation for possible security violations that allowed it to happen.

“When we reviewed the tape, there were several flags that came up,” Turner said.

He said inmates weren’t in a place where they could’ve escaped the jail, but they could have injured an officer.

Last year, Channel 2 Action News investigated security gaps at the jail as convicts showed how easy it is to pop maximum security section locks using soap, toilet paper or cardboard. In December, county commissioners voted to spend $5 million to replace 1,300 locks.

International Brotherhood of Police Officers representative Mike Pulliam acknowledged progress made by the current jail administration but believes officer safety requires the county to commit more resources to the jail.

“It is an ongoing concern. We get calls regularly from deputies saying there have been assaults or attempted assaults,” Pulliam told Winne.