A former inmate at the State Correctional Institution at Fayette in Luzerne Township has sued a corrections officer who was charged with assaulting him while he was incarcerated there in 2009.
Trevor Ringgold, 23, of Harrisburg alleged in the federal court filing that Matthew Keller, a guard at the lockup, and seven other officials physically assaulted him on July 28. Ringgold, through Smithfield attorney Charity Grimm Krupa, alleged that Keller, 28, of Belle Vernon told Ringgold to leave a food line at the lockup because he skipped ahead in the line, and then called Ringgold over and assaulted him.
During the course of the beating, Krupa alleged that seven other people identified only as John and Jane Does, also assaulted Ringgold.
The alleged assault left him “injured and bleeding,” and Ringgold was then put into solitary confinement for 15 days, Krupa indicated.
Following that, he was transferred to the State Correctional Institution at Greene, where guards were told he assaulted Keller, the suit alleged, and Ringgold was again put in solitary confinement.
When his property was transferred to SCI-Greene, the suit alleged, it was “urinated on and otherwise abused and destroyed.”
As a result of an investigation conducted by the state Department of Corrections Office of Professional Responsibility, Keller was ultimately charged with simple assault, official oppression and unsworn falsification.
The latter two charges were dismissed after a preliminary hearing before Magisterial District Judge Mike Defino Jr., and the simple assault charge was held for common pleas court.
The case has yet to be resolved.
Krupa alleged in the filing that Keller was involved in another assault, and that prison officials did nothing to correct his behavior.
She called Keller’s actions “malicious and sadistic” and alleged they “intended to cause harm.”
In addition to naming Keller, the suit names the Does and SCI-Fayette Superintendent Brian Coleman as defendants.
Ringgold is serving five to 10 years in prison following a 2007 guilty plea to robbery and other charges from Cumberland Township.