Corrections officer accused of strangling inmate found not guilty

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) — A corrections officer accused of strangling an inmate will not serve any time in jail.

A judge in Williamsburg found Vincent Russell not guilty of felony strangulation Tuesday.

The judge said there was enough evidence to find Russell guilty on the assault charge, but said if Russell stays out of trouble and pays court costs, the charge will be dismissed.

Russell works at the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail.

According to a criminal complaint filed in June of 2014 by former inmate John Wright, Russell attempted to trim him.

After Wright made a derogatory comment toward Russell, Wright wrote in his criminal complaint that Russell then grabbed him, forced him into a room, threw him to the ground and grabbed his windpipe.

“He was on my back with a knee in my back, his left hand reached around squeezing my throat,” Wright told 10 On Your Side. “I’m saying, ‘I can’t breath, I can’t breath,’ moving my head and he punches me twice — in my eye and in my head.”

The judge is postponing Russell’s trial for one year. Russell is not on probation.

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