Wayne providing outside counsel for jail workers disciplined in jail escape

Three Wayne County corrections officers disciplined for neglect of duty in a July prison break will be provided legal counsel as part of a state investigation into the incident.

The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a measure to provide outside legal counsel for corrections officers who have been issued subpoenas by the state Commission of Corrections.

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts, who meted out punishments for each of the officers in August, said the commission, as part of its duties, investigates jail escapes.

The decision to hire outside counsel was made with consultation from County Attorney Dan Connors, said Virts.

“The state Commission of Corrections stated (that) since the county attorney reviewed the disciplinary charges …. that the county attorney had a conflict in representing the correction officers,” said Virts in an email. “Rather than get into an extended disconnect over what the commission perceived as a conflict, the county attorney and I requested outside counsel for the correction officers per the county’s Local Indemnification Law.”

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