According to a press release from the U.S. District Attorney’s office Adam Bess, 34, of Sandusky, was indicted Thursday.
The FOX 8 I-Team obtained the video of the incident, after filing a public record request.
Sheriff Paul Sigsworth said Bess, and other correction officers, were trying to get the inmate, Tiffany Banks, into a restraint chair. The incident happened around 5 a.m. on Oct. 31 at the Erie County jail.
According to an incident report from the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, Bess tried to walk the woman to the chair.
“Tiffany began struggling and had to be physically placed in the restraint chair,” the report states. “Almost immediately, Sergeant Bess placed his right hand around Tiffany’s neck, in the area of her trachea, and began choking her. Tiffany repeatedly stated that she couldn’t breathe and voiced several other complaints.”
The sheriff added that Bess could be heard swearing at the woman.
“So we have strict policies in place regarding situations like this,” the sheriff told the I-Team. “Choke holds are prohibited except in very, very limited circumstances and this certainly wasn’t one of those circumstances.”
The sheriff said he found out about the incident on Nov. 1 when Banks called him to report the matter. He started investigating.
He also contacted the FBI and asked for an investigation.
This case was investigated by the Toledo FBI and the Erie County Sheriff’s Office.
“It appears to me he committed a criminal assault,” the sheriff said.
Bess resigned a couple of days later.
Atty. Ed Rhode III, of Sandusky, who represents Banks, said a civil lawsuit may be filed.