Reports: Jan. 6 detainee ‘beaten to bloody pulp’ by D.C. jail guards

by WorldTribune Staff, April 8, 2021

A man who was charged with assaulting a Capitol police officer during the Jan. 6 breach of the U.S. Capitol reported being beaten to a “bloody pulp” by guards at the Washington, D.C. jail where he is being held.

Others arrested following the events of Jan. 6 at the Capitol say they are being kept in solitary confinement, limited to their cells for 23 hours a day despite not being convicted of a crime, The Daily Wire reported on April 7.

D.C’s central detention facility

Ryan Samsel, who is charged with “assaulting a police officer at the Capitol on Jan. 6,” has alleged in a complaint to the court that “two guards at the D.C. jail beat him last month, breaking his nose, dislocating his jaw and leaving him suffering seizures,” The Washington Post reported.

“This is unjustified, and the way that these guys are being treated is completely unreasonable, it’s wholly unconstitutional,” Steven Metcalf, Samsel’s attorney, said. “It doesn’t matter what these guys are being charged with. All of these guys are still pretrial detention; they have not been convicted of any crimes. And this is what they’ve been forced to endure.”

The D.C. Department of Corrections confirmed in a statement to the Post that the incident was being investigated by the Department of Justice.

As related to him by Samsel, Metcalf said the incident took place the afternoon of March 20 when Samsel complained that the guards had taken hours to get him toilet paper. “An argument ensued. That evening, according to Metcalf, Samsel was moved to another cell. Around midnight, the lawyer said, two guards came to that cell, restrained Samsel’s arms behind his back with zip-tie handcuffs, and ‘beat him to a bloody pulp,’ ” the report said.

Samsel reportedly did not regain consciousness until the next day and has suffered seizures ever since.

Related: Rotten to the core: Tucker Carlson exposes DOJ’s Jan. 6 abuses in withering opening statement, April 7, 2021

Samsel, 37, was arrested Jan. 30 and faces charges for unlawfully entering the U.S. Capitol building, assaulting an officer and obstructing or impeding law enforcement.

The Intelligencer reported that Metcalf said he planned to file a civil lawsuit over the alleged attack, doubting any official investigation would be conducted in good faith.

“I do not anticipate that any of these agencies that are investigating this are going to do the right thing. Instead, we are going to have to enforce and ultimately pursue Ryan’s rights in a court of law,” Metcalf said, according to the Intelligencer report.

Metcalf said he has been told by other inmates at the prison that Samsel was “paraded” around the jail after he was beaten to create a chilling effect.

“It’s been basically made very clear: you mouth off, you do what we don’t want, you talk about this investigation and you’ll get the same thing that Ryan got, follow?” Metcalf said.

Samsel is reportedly not the only defendant awaiting trial for alleged actions during the events of Jan. 6 that has complained about mistreatment.

“For weeks, Capitol riot defendants being held in Washington have complained that they are locked in their cells with virtually no human contact for 23 hours a day,” Politico reported.

Additionally, at least one defendant has complained about being subject to “violence, threats, and verbal harassment” while in custody.

“Myself and others involved in the Jan. 6 incident are scared for their lives, not from each other but from correctional officers,” one defendant, Ronald Sandlin, who is accused of smoking marijuana on Capitol grounds and of “tussling with multiple U.S. Capitol Police officers guarding the Senate chamber and trying to rip the helmet off of one of them,” told a judge during his bail hearing. “I don’t understand how this is remotely acceptable.” Sandlin called his treatment at the hands of D.C. prison guards, “mental torture.”

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