CAMDEN COUNTY, Ga. — A Camden County corrections deputy was suspended without pay and ordered to undergo further training after a fight with an inmate was caught on camera inside the Camden County Jail on Mar. 24.
The Camden County Sheriffs Office says this all began when inmate Zyaire Ratliff, in custody for violating probation and failure to appear, got in the food line to ask a question about inmate visitation. However, Ratliff wasn’t being served food during daylight hours in observance of Ramadan due to his religious faith.
The sheriffs office says Ratliff was then repeatedly asked to leave the line so he wouldn’t hold up other inmates looking to get food. When he refused to leave, the sheriffs office says corrections officer J. Anderson, decided to use force.
“There could have possibly been other issues or avenues taken prior to it becoming a physical issue,” Camden County jail administrator Major Rob Mastroianni told Action News Jax on Thursday. “We take it seriously and we don’t want physical altercations to occur if possible.”
According to the Camden County Sheriffs Office, Anderson has since been suspended for one day without pay and given further training on de-escalation, professionalism and ethics.
“He’s learned from it, there’s no doubt,” Major Mastroianni said. “He realizes that there were other options that he could have taken, but this is the way it went.”
This incident also comes after several corrections officer were seen beating an inmate on camera in September of 2022. Three of the officers in that case were fired, arrested, and criminally charged. However, Major Mastroianni says despite both incidents occurring inside the jail within several months of each other, neither are indicative of the department overall.
[SIGN UP: Action News Jax Daily Headlines Newsletter]
“This is not the agency as a whole, and this particular issue is not the same as the previous one,” Major Mastroianni assured.