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Federal court sentences 6 ex-Mississippi officers for torturing 2 Black men

via NBC News

Six former Mississippi law enforcement officers are set to be sentenced in federal court this week for conspiring to abuse and torture two Black men, one of whom was shot in the mouth, in January 2023.

The officers pleaded guilty to both federal civil rights violations and state charges related to the incident.

Federal prosecutors are seeking maximum sentences of up to life in prison, citing the officers’ roles in torturing and assaulting the men for two hours using racial slurs, before one officer shot one of the victims.

“We will break down each defendant’s possibilities and expectations for criminal Sentencing next week,” one prosecutor said.

“Kristen Clarke, US Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, has just reached out to Michael Jenkins, Eddie Parker and their families,” he said. “AAG Clark expressed her commitment to civil rights and to eliminating racial intimidation under the color of law in Mississippi. We are deeply appreciative of her department’s historic legal efforts.”

The officers then conspired to cover up the abuse.

Three of the officers also pleaded guilty to additional federal charges for assaulting and threatening another man in December 2022 in an attempt to coerce a confession.

“He takes responsibility for his part in the horrific harms perpetrated on Mr. Jenkins and Mr. Parker, the victims, and is prepared to face the consequences of his misconduct,” one defendant’s attorney, Jeffery Reynolds said.

All six former officers still await sentencing on state charges related to the January incident.

The deputies, “in their repeated use of racial slurs in the course of their violent acts, were oppressive and hateful against their African-American victims,” the lawsuit states. “Defendants were motivated on the basis of race and the color of the skin of the persons they assaulted.”

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