MADISON PARISH, LA — On Thursday, July 25, investigators with the Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations arrested 5 guards from the Madison Parish Detention Center in Tallulah. The arrests were a result of an ongoing investigation that was requested by Madison Parish Sheriff Larry Cox on Tuesday, July 16, 2013.
Sheriff Cox contacted investigators from the Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations to conduct an independent investigation into allegations of prisoner abuse by guards that occurred at the Madison Parish Detention Center in February of this year. Sheriff Cox contacted Louisiana State Police to continue an investigation he originated after allegations were brought to his attention.
The alleged abuse involves 3 incidents with two separate inmates over two days. Toney Barber, 37, and Timothy James, 36, both of Tallulah were charged with Aggravated Battery and Malfeasance in Office. Clint Freeman, 66, of Tallulah, Gary James, 42, of Newellton and Tori Thomas, 35, of Tallulah were charged with malfeasance in office. The investigation is ongoing. All five were booked into the Madison Parish Jail.
All five of the guards have been terminated from the Madison Parish Detention Center. Toney Barber is also a civilian employee of the Department of Public Safety. DPS has placed Barber on administrative leave due to his arrest.
If convicted on all charges, Barber and Timothy James face up to a $10,000 fine and from 1 to 15 years in prison without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Freeman, Gary James and Thomas face up to a $5,000 fine and 5 years in prison if convicted.
The Louisiana State Police on-line reporting system is available to the public through a secure reporting form that is submitted to investigators. Citizens can access the form by visiting www.lsp.org and clicking the suspicious activity link.