The Chatham County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia this week announced that it had fired and arrested deputy Sgt. Charlesetta Hawkins after she allegedly pepper sprayed an inmate who had been placed in restraints.
In an April 18 video obtained by Savannah Now, Hawkins can be see approaching inmate Jonathan Mahone, who is strapped to a restraint chair.
Although the man cannot move his arms or legs, he appears to spit on Hawkins’ face at one point.
“I’ll teach you a lesson,” she reportedly replies before twice shooting pepper spray in his face.
“Do you understand me?” she asks the inmate. “Now you do it again.”
Video shows Mahone choking and shaking his head side to side for a period of about 15 minutes before Hawkins finally wipes the pepper spray off of his face.
Hawkins was taken into custody and charged with cruelty to an inmate, the sheriff’s office announced on Monday. Mahone was also facing assault charges for spitting in Hawkins’ face.
“It is assault, and he’s going to be charged with that, but there’s no reason for her to pepper spray him when he’s in full restraint sitting in a restraint chair and can’t get up and can’t move,” Sheriff John Wilcher told reporters on Monday. “I’m not going to tolerate an inmate being abused, and I’m not going to tolerate my officers being abused by an inmate, and she abused this inmate who was perfectly content being strapped in that chair.”
“I think that she was just in a state that she was upset because the guy spit on her and just lost her cool,” he added.
Watch the video below.