Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and Michael J. Driscoll, Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced today that TAJ EVERLY, a former correction officer at Green Haven Correctional Facility, was charged in White Plains federal court with falsifying records in connection with EVERLY’s May 28, 2020, assault of an inmate at Green Haven. EVERLY was arrested this morning and presented before Magistrate Judge Judith C. McCarthy. The case is assigned to U.S. District Judge Nelson S. Román.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “As alleged, Taj Everly abused his position as a correction officer by assaulting an inmate and then lying about his actions in an incident report. This Office has no tolerance for correction officers like Everly who, as alleged, commit acts of violence against inmates in their care and custody and then lie to cover their tracks. Today’s indictment should send a clear message that this Office will continue to investigate and prosecute civil rights abuses wherever we find them.”
FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Michael J. Driscoll said: “As we allege today, Mr. Everly violated his oath to uphold the law when he willingly filed a false report to conceal his malicious actions. Individuals in a position of authority in our criminal justice system are not above the law. The FBI will continue to investigate these types of allegations and ensure those who abuse their power are held accountable.”
According to the allegations in the Indictment unsealed today in White Plains federal court:
On May 28, 2020, EVERLY, who was then a correction officer at Green Haven Correctional Facility, located in Stormville, New York, assaulted an inmate (the “Inmate”) in the care and custody of the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (“DOCCS”). As the Inmate exited a room at Green Haven, EVERLY approached the Inmate and, without provocation, punched the Inmate, causing both EVERLY and the Inmate to fall to the ground.
After the assault, EVERLY prepared an incident report, in which EVERLY falsely stated that the Inmate had first punched him and that EVERLY responded with force.
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EVERLY, 32, of Cortlandt Manor, New York, is charged with falsifying records in connection with a federal investigation, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The maximum potential sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by a judge.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI and the DOCCS Office of Special Investigations.
The prosecution of this case is being handled by the Office’s Civil Rights Unit in the Criminal Division. Assistant United States Attorney Lindsey Keenan is in charge of the prosecution.
The charge contained in the Indictment is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.