ATLANTA - A group of prisoners filed a class-action lawsuit yesterday contending that Georgia corrections officers have systematically beaten restrained inmates in prisons throughout the state, leaving two dead and dozens of others injured.
The lawsuit, filed in US District Court in Valdosta, names 25 guards and other corrections officials as culprits in routine beatings and torture of restrained inmates. It also says they subsequently covered up the abuses by inflicting even more beatings on prisoners who file complaints.
Seven Valdosta State Prison inmates state in court documents that members of the prison's response team kicked them with combat boots, choked them with night sticks, and donned black leather "beating gloves" to carry out the attacks between October 2005 and last August.
The lawsuit also mentions the cases of more than 40 inmates in other Georgia prisons who have reported incidents of abuse between 2003 and 2005.
Paul Czachowski, a state spokesman, said there is a "pending investigation" at the Valdosta prison.