Lake County correctional officers arrested, charged with inmate battery, perjury, officials say

CLERMONT, Fla. — Three correctional officers have been arrested after an investigation into the battery of an inmate in Lake County, according to the Florida Department of Corrections.

Officials said Correctional Capt. Milton Gass, Correctional Officer Hunter Lingo and Correctional Officer Joshua Petersilge were arrested in conjunction with the criminal investigation.

The three were charged with violations stemming from an incident on July 8 at the Lake Correctional Institution were video showed several corrections officers surrounding an inmate during an altercation.

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“We took immediate action to terminate the employees arrested today following the criminal charges brought against them,” said Secretary Mark Inch in a press release. “The Florida Department of Corrections will not tolerate inmate abuse at any level. These swift disciplinary actions are a testament to our commitment to ensuring officers are held accountable when they abuse the trust of the public and those they are charged with supervising. We will continue to work cooperatively with the Inspector General as they continue to investigate all of those found to be involved in this incident. This investigation is not over. Anyone found to have acted outside their authorities or the standards of our Department will be held accountable.”

Two of the officers were charged with inmate battery and another officer was charged with perjury, officials said.

Officials said the investigation is ongoing and more arrests or administrative sanctions may be forthcoming.

Sources confirmed Thursday morning that the trio bonded out of jail overnight.

Anyone with information or evidence of the incident is asked to contact the FDC OIG at 850-488-9265 (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.), or 866-246-4412 on a 24-hour recorded tip line or submit information online at www.dc.state.fl.us/apps/IGcomplaint.asp.

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