Edgar Co., IL. (ECWd) –
***Edited to remove phone numbers from pdf***
We recently wrote (here and here) about allegations of Edgar County Sheriff’s Corrections Officers and their antics at work, like filming someone on the toilet masturbating and posting the video to social media, and another one filming a strip search while rapping to it and posting that video to social media.
Both individuals should have been fired and brought up on charges in our opinion – the investigations continue into the social media video postings and any involvement by other officers.
Instead of Sheriff Jeff Wood firing them and recommending criminal charges, one was permitted to simply resign, while the other attempted to resign but was fired instead.
We can only wonder how much this will cost the taxpayers if or when their victims file lawsuits for the humiliation they endured while in the custody of the Edgar County Sheriff.
In response to a FOIA request about complaint against officers, the Edgar County Sheriff provided the following:
- A complaint of officers playing cards and watching television shows during the midnight shift (here)
- A copy of Zeb Washburn’s notification of being placed on administrative leave pending investigation (here)
- Investigation report indicating multiple policy violations of Washburn (here), including:
- watching movies and playing cards instead of assisting in their duties
- senior employees telling junior employees not to say anything
- hanging out in the building during non-working hours
- playing the “seniority card” instead of performing assigned duties
- attempts to scare newer employees with tasers
- placing hand sanitizer on their hands and lighting it on fire
- Interviews 1, 2, 3, and 4, discussing the above events
Although none of the FOIA responses dealt with the posting of videos on social media, we understand the video postings are what prompted the two corrections officers (Zeb Washburn and Ferrante) to resign – Washburn was instead fired, while Ferrante was permitted to resign.