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Former Officer Convicted of Mistreating Prisoner; Two Others Acquitted

November 6, 1991

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) _ A federal jury Tuesday convicted a former jail guard of a misdemeanor charge of beating a handcuffed inmate. Two others were acquitted.

Donald Adkins Jr. was convicted of mistreating a prisoner and violating his civil rights. He faces a year in prison and a $100,000 fine when he is sentenced Jan. 6, the U.S. attorney’s office said.

The jury deliberated 2 1/2 hours before acquitting Fred S. Beane III and Michael P. Dalporto of violating the civil rights of Charles Prater, 19.

″Obviously we’re a little disappointed ... everything Donald did, Donald thought was right,″ said attorney William Murray, who represented Adkins.

The officers were among seven guards fired by Kanawha County Sheriff Art Ashley for allegedly participating in the beating.

Prater was beaten after he was taken to the Kanawha County Jail on May 3 on a disorderly conduct charge. A jail security camera showed Prater being punched in the face four times and being struck after he was put in his cell. He was treated at a hospital for bruises.

Charges against Prater, including public intoxication, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, were later dropped.

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