Prison officer guilty of misconduct over prisoners death
Prison officer guilty of misconduct over prisoners death, In a recent case at Worcester Crown Court, Graham Evans, a former worker at HMP Hewell, was found guilty of misconduct in a public office following the death of an inmate, Mesut Olgun. Olgun, aged 30 from Bristol, tragically took his own life on his first night in the prison in June 2018. Evans, 66, was responsible for conducting checks on Olgun, who was assessed as an immediate suicide risk and required monitoring four times every hour. However, the court heard that Evans only performed 10 out of the 33 required checks.
The incident occurred after Olgun was involved in a violent confrontation in Bromyard, Herefordshire, where he stabbed a police officer and his dog before injuring himself. On the night of his death, Olgun had been considered a high-risk inmate due to his actions and mental state. Despite knowing that Olgun had harmed himself the previous day, Evans believed it was a cry for help and failed to conduct the necessary checks.
The jury was informed that Evans made false entries in the prison log, claiming to have checked on Olgun when he had not. This misconduct led to his conviction, although he was acquitted of a separate manslaughter charge. Evans had a long career in law enforcement, serving 33 years as a constable with West Midlands Police before joining HMP Hewell in November 2008.
The judge, Mr Justice Pepperall, expressed deep concerns about the lack of safer cells at HMP Hewell in 2018 and requested further information from the prison ombudsman. The family of Mr Olgun, represented by their solicitor, expressed satisfaction with the verdict, noting the rarity of prison officers being held accountable for failing to care for inmates.
Evans is scheduled to be sentenced at Worcester Crown Court in January. This case highlights the critical responsibility of prison staff in ensuring the safety and well-being of inmates, particularly those at risk of self-harm or suicide.