Former Choctaw County (Okla.) Sheriff's Deputy Ben Westley Milner has been sentenced to 18 months in prison and two years' supervised release for assaulting three men in two incidents.
In the first incident, which took place on 2005, Milner physically abused a truck driver following a traffic stop. In a second incident in 2007, Milner assaulted two inmates at the Choctaw County Jail with a large axe handle. Milner was convicted on Sept. 24, 2009, on three counts of violating the civil rights of his victims and two counts of falsifying official reports.
"The investigation and prosecution of this case shows that the Department of Justice does not tolerate abuse of authority by the people we entrust to enforce our laws," according to Thomas E. Perez, U.S. Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division.
The convictions resulted from an investigation by the Oklahoma Division of the FBI.
"Law enforcement officers in the Eastern District of Oklahoma are generally well trained in the exercise of reasonable force. We expect that they will survive the dangers inherent in their shifts of work and return home to their families and loved ones. But when those who swear to obey the law, violate that law, a day of reckoning awaits," according to Sheldon J. Sperling, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma.