Protesters say inmate at Ocala's Lowell Correctional was nearly beaten to death

OCALA, Fla. — Fifty people gathered outside of Lowell Correctional Institution in Ocala and protested for four hours Saturday. They were protesting after they said an inmate was almost beaten to death.

Cheryl Weimar is in the hospital after relatives said she was nearly beaten to death by four officers at Lowell Correctional last month.

The family's attorney filed a federal lawsuit claiming the officers slammed Weimar to the ground, brutally beat her until her neck broke, then dragged her like a rag doll to an area without surveillance cameras.

The attorney said Weimar is now a quadriplegic and relies on a feeding tube.

One of the protesters, a former Lowell inmate, is disgusted by the allegations. "The punishment is to be removed from society. It's not to be beaten and crippled," Debra Bennett said.

Weimar had two years left of her six-year sentence, after being convicted of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

Weimar's attorney said the confrontation started when she complained that pain from a preexisting hip condition prohibited her from cleaning toilets.

"We're not stopping until there's an arrest. We're not stopping until there's no more reports of anybody being beaten," Bennett said.

The Department of Corrections will not release the officers' names but said they've been reassigned to other duties.

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