PD: Tempe jail detention officer charged with assaulting suspect

Posted at 2:58 PM, Sep 14, 2017

A Tempe city jail detention officer has been charged with assault in connection with a July incident involving a suspect.

Superior court documents show that on Tuesday, Abram Gabriel Hunt was charged with aggravated assault.

Tempe police sent the case to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office after an investigation revealed that on the morning of July 28, a man was brought to the jail on a car theft charge and was put in a cell. Later that afternoon, the man banged on the jail cell door, requesting a blanket.

Police say jail surveillance video shows that as the door opened, the man "extended his handcuffed hands from his chest with his palms open."

Hunt was first detention officer to enter the cell, and he allegedly punched the man in the face.

The man was taken to the hospital for evaluation.

After their investigation, it was determined by Tempe police that the man posed no threat to Hunt or any other detention officer. 

Hunt reportedly acknowledged his wrongdoing and was released pending review by the county attorney’s office.

When reached for comment, Tempe jail officials said they are looking into the incident.

Hunt is scheduled to appear in court on October 9.