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Cook County Jail Guard Charged With Punching Inmate, Knocking Him Down

Cook County Jail (Credit: CBS)

Cook County Jail (Credit: CBS)

tafoya250 Bernie Tafoya
I’m a lifelong Chicagoan and could never see myself living anywhere...
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CHICAGO (CBS) — A Cook County Jail officer faces prison time for allegedly hitting an inmate and knocking him down.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, prosecutors say a 20-year-old inmate was being processed at the jail in June, when he told sheriff’s Correctional Officer Rico Palomino he needed something from the inventoried property area and kept walking down a hallway.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports

But Palomino got out from behind his desk, followed the burly detainee, and ordered him to return to the lockup area or Palomino would “f**k him up.”

After that, the football lineman-sized Palomino allegedly punched the inmate in the face so hard that he was knocked to the ground and was bleeding from the mouth.

Palomino also allegedly told the inmate that he should tell people he had tried to hit Palomino first, or else the officer would report that the inmate had tried to escape, according to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office.

The victim needed stitches after Palomino punched him, prosecutors said.

Palomino, 40, is charged with official misconduct. He is alleged to have filed a series of false reports about what happened – claiming that the inmate grabbed his shirt first – but prosecutors say it was all caught on video, and the inmate did nothing to Palomino before the officer attacked him.

Palomino’s bond was set at $10,000.