Acting Attorney General Andrew Bruck announced charges today against one Department of Corrections official and four correctional officers at the Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women, following a brutal assault on prisoners that occurred on January 12.
The five officers are charged with forcibly removing prisoners from their cells and causing them bodily injury that night, and subsequently lying to superiors about the nature of the incidents.
The new charges bring the total number of defendants in the Edna Mahan investigation up to 15. One of the defendants unveiled today, Associate Administrator Sean St. Paul, was the highest-ranking official present at Edna Mahan on the night of January 12, and is also the highest-ranking official charged in the case so far.
“We are holding accountable everyone who was involved in January’s brutal assaults, from the line officers working the cell block to the highest-ranking prison official on duty that night,” Bruck said in a statement. “With today’s charges, we are making clear that even the senior-most leadership at Edna Mahan must be held responsible for their illegal conduct.”
In response both to the January assault and previous instances of abuse and neglect at the women’s facility, Gov. Phil Murphy announced in June that Edna Mahan would close permanently. That same month, Department of Corrections Commissioner Marcus Hicks resigned, and was replaced by now-acting Commissioner Victoria Kuhn.