Woman says former Jackson County jailers facing federal charges would brag about hurting inmates

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Guards are being accused of beating inmates at the Jackson County jail. Four former correctional officers were smacked with federal charges last week.

A woman who says the suspects often bragged about hurting the prisoners spoke exclusively with FOX 4 on Wednesday.

For her own safety, she wanted to remain anonymous, but claims these charges are the tip of the iceberg of the twisted and horrifying acts that happened beyond these doors.

"They would talk a lot of personal details about specific inmates."

She's heard disturbing stories, straight from the mouths of Jackson County correctional officers, bragging about beating multiple inmates to the point where their knuckles were covered in blood.

"For a person of authority to be able to abuse that really bothers me."

But the stories kept getting worse and more in depth. From the officers joking about attacking inmates, to telling inmates to kill themselves.

"He should've just killed himself, he should kill himself. They would talk amongst themselves and they would say if he acted like he was going to, I would just walk away. I might just forget to check on him that day."

She says she tried calling the Jackson County jail to report what she heard multiple times and her calls were never returned. Days ago, she got a call from a friend with news that one of the officers was federally charged.

Prosecutors say 27-year-old Travis Hewitt, 24-year-old Dakota Pearce, 36-year-old Terrance Dooley Jr., and Jen-I Pulos conspired to assault an inmate. Investigators say the inmate, who was not posing a threat to anyone, was tied up and beaten by the officers.

"They are inmates. But inmates have rights too. Especially in a county jail."

The woman FOX 4 talked to says she knows first-hand that the abuse in the jail has been happening for years, something she's willing to testify about in court.

"Do you think more charges will come out after this?" FOX 4's Megan Brilley asked.

"I think that if they keep investigating it further back, and if they do a good enough job, I hope so and I hope it'll come against a lot more people."

A representative for the jail says it is evaluating procedures and giving extra training to officers. Court records say trial is set to begin June 12th.

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