A Texas Corrections Officer in Huntsville has been arrested for the death of an inmate after the inmate spit on him.
Corrections Officer D’Andre Glasper was charged this month with one count of aggravated assault after a prisoner who was just two months from being released died after hitting his head during an altercation with Glasper in the Estelle Unit shower.
The 22-year old guard was booked into the Walker County Jail and released on $50,000 bond.
Two weeks before his release, Gary Lesley Ryan (58) allegedly spit on Glasper during an 8 a.m. morning count. Glasper reported the incident to his supervisor and then sought medical attention before returning to his post.
Glasper was informed by his superiors to keep away from the inmate to prevent the incident from escalating. Glasper ignored the order later that afternoon and escorted Ryan to the shower. Glasper later reported that Ryan became aggressive and made derogatory remarks prompting him to use excessive force.
As Glasper took Ryan down, the inmate hit his head and fell unconscious. Ryan was flown to Memorial Herman Hospital in critical condition.
Ryan underwent surgery to relieve pressure in his brain, but doctors were unable to save him. Gary Lesley Ryan died September 12.
At the time of his death, he was a little over four years into a five-year sentence for harassment of a public servant. Ryan was scheduled to be released November 23.
Glasper was arrested two days before Ryan’s death on September 10. At the time aggravated assault was the highest charge possible. Because Glasper was an officer the charge was upgraded to a first-degree felony which carries a sentencing range from 5 to 99 years or life in prison.
It is likely the charges could later change to murder once the inmate’s autopsy report is completed.
According to TDCJ data, in 2008 there were 6,231 cases of major use of force by correction officers. By 2013, that number increased to 7,151 and in 2017 the number increased again to 9,328.
The incident is still under investigation.