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Mississippi Sheriff’s Deputies Sentenced to Prison for Torturing and Sexually Assaulting Two Black Men, 5 Other Officers Also Waiting to Be Sentenced

U.S. District Judge Tom Lee gave a 40-year prison sentence to 29-year-old Christian Dedmon, a 17.5 year sentence to 28-year-old Daniel Opdyke, 17.5 years to 46-year-old Jeffrey Middleton, and a 20-year-sentence to Hunter Elward, a former Mississippi Sheriff for partaking in torturing two Black men in a racist assault. Two more officers, Brett McAlphin, 53, and Joshua Hartfield, 32, are set to appear separately before the court and face lengthy prison terms.

The group’s crimes were labeled as “egregious and despicable,”  by the judge who also said “a sentence at the top of the guidelines range is justified — is more than justified.” He continued: “It’s what the defendant deserves. It’s what the community and the defendant’s victims deserve.”

In January 2023, the six officers barged into a Ranky County home without a warrant and assaulted Jenkins and Parker with stun guns, a sex toy and other objects.

The vicious acts of terror carried out by a group of white deputies who called themselves “The Goon Squad,” barged inside the home of the victims and poured milk, alcohol and chocolate syrup over their faces. They then compelled Jenkins and Parker to strip naked as they forced them to shower together, hurled racial slurs at the two men, and shocked them with stun guns. 

Elward even shot Jenkins in the mouth which resulted in the victim suffering from a lacerated tongue and a broken jaw. 

Jenkins, who is a musician, has been barred from singing due to having trouble speaking and eating. 

“I am hurt. I am broken,” Jenkins wrote in his statement. “They tried to take my manhood from me. They did some unimaginable things to me, and the effects will linger for the rest of my life.”

The former sheriff then tried to apologize by saying, “I don’t want to get too personal. I see you every night, and I can’t go back and do what’s right, I am so sorry for what I did.”

Parker replied by saying, “I forgive you.”

The officers charged with torturing Parker and Jenkins were Elward, McAlpin, Dedmon, Jeffrey Middleton and Daniel Opdyke of the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department, and Joshua Hartfield, a Richland police officer. 

All of them have pleaded guilty to a number of federal and state charges.

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