Two More Mississippi Deputies Convicted for Torture of Black Men

Two More Mississippi Deputies Convicted for Torture of Black Men

Daniel Opdyke and Christian Dedmon, two former Mississippi sheriff’s officers, were sentenced to jail on Wednesday for the 2023 torture of two Black males. They are the newest members of the self-described “Goon Squad” from Rankin County.

Christian Dedmon, a former deputy, was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Tom Lee on Wednesday afternoon for his part in the protracted beating and torture of Eddie Parker and Michael Corey Jenkins.

Dedmon expressed his desire to “make a difference” by joining police enforcement and expressed regret for the hurt he had caused. Of the six “Goon Squad” deputies, federal prosecutors claimed that Dedmon was the most twisted and had a history of using excessive force.

Among the six deputies charged with torturing the two prisoners, Dedmon, 29, was given the harshest term to date. Dedmon entered a guilty plea in August to counts of conspiracy to obstruct justice and house invasion. He also entered a guilty plea to sexually assaulting one of the males. Dedmon is currently awaiting punishment in state court.

Opdyke was earlier on Wednesday given a 17 and a half-year prison sentence by Lee. Opdyke must also pay $79,500 in reparations to the victims and receive treatment for mental health and drug misuse.

Two more former deputies were sentenced on Tuesday. Hunter Elward received a 20-year sentence. Jeffrey Middleton received a sentence that exceeded 17 years.

Joshua Hartfield and Brett McAlpin, the two surviving former deputies, are scheduled to be sentenced on Thursday.

Elward expressed regret during his Tuesday sentence. Parker expressed his forgiveness to him, but Jenkins later told CNN that Elward’s apology was ineffective.

Middleton also expressed regret.

However, Parker’s victim’s statement, which Mark Shabazz, the attorney, read out in court, stated that he did not believe Middleton was sorry.

before August, all six of the individuals entered guilty pleas to charges of conspiracy against rights, deprivation of rights under color of law, conspiracy to obstruct justice, and obstruction of justice before a federal court.

The six former deputies used a Taser on the Black males more than a dozen times during their roughly ninety-minute attack at a private residence in Braxton, Mississippi, last year without a warrant. They also used racial epithets against them.

Elward accidentally shot Jenkin in the mouth during a simulated execution, leaving her permanently damaged. Both males had guns held to their heads as well.

The deputies were dismissed by Rankin County Sheriff Bryan Bailey in June 2023 for offenses against Jenkins and Parker.

The victims sued for $400 million, claiming that they had been tortured and imprisoned illegally.

The lawsuit claimed that the men suffered from efforts to sexually abuse them, were waterboarded, punched while handcuffed and naked, and were also shot and shocked with a Taser charge.