Sheriff Defends Correctional Security

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FRANKLIN - Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke is defending the security system at the County Correctional Facility South after a guard was punched last week.

According to the sheriff's department, inmate Terrance Booker punched officer Keona Garth-Dickens last Friday.

During the assault, the Sheriff's Department says a different inmate assisted the officer by pushing the panic button in the dormitory room where the assault occurred.

When that happens, the door to the dorm is locked so that inmates cannot steal the guard's keys to leave the area.

According to Sheriff Clarke, any other officer can then assist by opening the door to the dormitory from the outside.

In the assault of Garth-Dickens, Clarke said help arrived in less than one minute.

"I talked to the officer yesterday," said Clarke.  

"She was overwhelmed by the response that she got when the panic alarm was pushed. She said that in about 30 seconds, there were at least 50 officers here.”

Clarke is defending the security system at the facility because his political opponent, Milwaukee Police Lieutenant Chris Moews, is using the assault to criticize the County Correctional Facility South.

Moews is running against Clarke in this fall's Democratic primary election.

"If they have the proper safe guards in place, or the proper system in place, then why weren’t the people trained to use it properly? If you have a tool in your tool box but no one knows how to use it, what good is it to you," questioned Moews.

However, Clarke maintained that Moews does not have his facts right and praised the work of officers at the facility.

"Officers are provided with training, up to date training, ongoing training, self defense tactics, but anybody can get a sucker punch in and knock somebody down. They could do that to me,” said Clarke.