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Former Alabama federal prison guard sentenced in sexual abuse case

Eric Todd Ellis sexually abused an incarcerated woman at a federal prison in Aliceville, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

The federal prison in Aliceville, Alabama.

A former Alabama federal corrections officer was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months in prison and five years of probation after pleading guilty to sexually abusing an incarcerated women and attempting to cover it up. 

Eric Todd Ellis, 32, on June 11, 2020, had sexual contact with the woman while working as a correctional officer at the Federal Bureau of Prison’s Federal Correctional Institute in Aliceville, according to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice. 

Ellis admitted to another officer that he’d committed the act, then tried to convince that officer to lie to investigators, according to the DOJ. 

“Ellis sexually abused an inmate and then tried to cover it up,” said special agent in charge James Boyersmith of the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General Miami Field Office in a statement. “Today’s sentencing sends a clear message that prison staff who abuse their power and assault inmates in their custody will be brought to justice.”

“The sexual abuse of prison inmates by federal corrections officers is intolerable,” said U.S. Attorney Prim Escalona of the Northern District of Alabama in a statement. “My office will vigorously investigate and prosecute any such officers who violate their oath of office. As today’s sentence makes plain, officers who abuse inmates face significant prison time for their offense.”

Eddie Burkhalter is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or reach him via Twitter.

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The alleged sexual assaults occurred at the federal prison facility located in Aliceville.