BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Buffalo cell block attendant Matthew Jaskula has agreed to a plea bargain in his federal civil rights case, sources have confirmed to News 4.
Jaskula, 26, was indicted, last July, on a single count of depriving the civil rights of an inmate, who was in his custody, at the City of Buffalo’s cell block on West Eagle Street.
On the night of May 19, 2016, suspect Shaun Porter was brought to the City’s Cell Block by two Buffalo police officers. Porter was charged with assaulting a woman at her Wilson St. apartment, charges that have been subsequently dismissed.
Court records show cell block attendant Jaskula assaulted Porter, while he was in handcuffs, shoving Porter’s face against a wall, and slamming him to the floor. All the while, the two police officers are accused of watching the assault and doing nothing to stop Jaskula.
Porter’s attorney Richard Binko included additional details, last June, outside of City Court, “Our understanding that he was subsequently chained to a restraint chair, and bled from his broken nose for hours.”
Records indicate the incident was recorded on 4 cameras in the cell block, and it would be twelve hours before Porter was taken for treatment at the Erie County Medical Center.
In July, a federal grand jury handed up an indictment against Jaskula, one count of willfully depriving Porter of his rights, under color of law. Jaskula has been suspended without pay since charges were initially filed, last June. So have both of the police officers.
Sources say, the clincher leading to Jaskula’s change of plea was the video from the surveillance cameras, it was so clear and so graphic, there really was no getting around it.
Attorneys are not saying what Jaskula has agreed to plea to, only that it will be a felony. Maximum penalty for the civil rights violation is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The Buffalo News has sued the city to release the video, but a state judge denied that request and attorneys for the newspaper are appealing the decision. Shaun Porter has started the process of suing the city for damages.