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Former Montgomery County Sheriff's Officer Sentenced In Pepper Spray Jail Incident

prison bars
Michael Coghlan
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Flickr Creative Commons

A former Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office captain, accused of pepper-spraying a restrained inmate at the Montgomery County Jail in 2015, has pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct. The settlement is part of a plea deal that also bars the officer from rejoining the ranks of law enforcement.

Captain Judith Sealey was a sergeant when she used pepper spray on then-inmate Amber Swink. Swink was reportedly belligerent but fully restrained in a seven-point harness during the incident.

A video of the altercation released last year by Swink’s attorney drew national attention.

Sealey was originally facing misdemeanor assault charges. Her trial, set for Tuesday, was changed to a pretrial hearing and sentencing, where she entered the guilty plea.

Under the terms of the plea deal, the former officer received a 30-day jail sentence that was suspended - so she will not serve time behind bars. Sealey was also stripped of her current law enforcement certifications and is barred from re-certifying at any time in the future.

Sealey retired from the force last year citing medical disability. A civil-lawsuit filed by Swink over the incident was settled last year for $375,000.