Inmate Faces Preliminary Hearing on Charge of Aggregated Flatulence

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According to Jeff Meyer, the attorney for Lincoln County, Nebraska, fights among inmates are pretty common even in the small and charming jails that dot our nation’s heartland.  (He didn’t say the bit about the jails of the heartland.)  Usually, he says, they are "about someone hogging the newspaper or someone not happy about what’s on TV," but it does not seem to be particularly common for assaults to be caused by flatulence.

Brian Bruggeman now faces a January 11 preliminary hearing after an incident involving a fight between Bruggeman and his cellmate, Jesse Dorris.  According to the report, Dorris became "fed up with Bruggeman’s flatulence" after an instance of said flatulence occurred "in close proximity to Dorris."  The two began scuffling and Bruggeman injured Dorris by pushing him into the cell bars.  Interestingly, Dorris was not charged although he arguably started the physical portion of the fight.  Bruggeman’s initial act is evidently the basis for charges against him, specifically "assault by a confined person," which is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

Anybody know what the federal sentencing guidelines prescribe for this kind of assault?  Just curious.

Sheriff Jerome Kramer said the incident was due in part to overcrowding.  The Lincoln County Jail, built in 1933, is designed to hold 23 inmates but has recently held as many as 65.  When Bruggeman-style assaults occur, said the sheriff, inmates "just can’t get a reprieve from one another."

Link: AP via Yahoo! News