Two ex-officers in Rankin County, Mississippi sentenced for torture of two Black men; four others await sentencing

Former Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers Sentenced for Abusing Black Men


Former Mississippi law enforcement officers who were part of a group called the “Goon Squad” were sentenced to prison for torturing and abusing two Black men. Two of the officers, Hunter Elward and Jeffrey Middleton, received sentences of 20 years and 17.5 years respectively. Four other ex-officers involved in the abuse will be sentenced later in the week.

Incident Details

The incident in Braxton, near Jackson, involved the illegal entry into a woman’s home, where the victims were handcuffed, kicked, waterboarded, and assaulted. The men were subjected to abuse for nearly two hours, culminating in Elward shooting one of the victims. The officers found no crime despite the false report that led them to the home.

Group Activities

Several officers, including Elward, Middleton, and Opdyke, were part of a group known as “The Goon Squad,” characterized by their use of excessive force and failure to report it. Middleton had emblems branded with the group’s name and Confederate symbols.

Sentencing and Impact

The courtroom was filled with supporters and civil rights activists during the sentencing. Elward and Middleton were ordered to pay restitution to the victims and face additional charges related to the incident. The judge emphasized Middleton’s significant role in the abuse.

Statements and Apologies

During the proceedings, Elward apologized to the victims, expressing regret for his actions. Middleton accepted responsibility for his actions, acknowledging the harm caused to the victims and their families. However, the victims expressed skepticism about the sincerity of Middleton’s apology.


The former officers await sentencing on state charges as federal prosecutors seek maximum sentences for their crimes. The Justice Department remains committed to holding accountable those who violate constitutional rights and betray the public trust.

Read More of this Story at – 2024-03-20 03:22:00

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