Former DepCor officer alleges impropriety with investigation - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Former DepCor officer alleges impropriety with investigation

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by Mindy Aguon

Guam - More and more information is coming out about the recent tasering investigation at the Department of Corrections that resulted in the termination of two corrections officers. One of the terminated officers alleges there was impropriety with the investigation.

Recently fired from his job, Matthew Gill now waits for the Civil Service Commission to determine whether DepCor acted appropriately when they terminated him and fellow officer Michael Martinez.

Both were fired on Tuesday. Martinez is accused of holding down an inmate while tasering him as Gill allegedly stood by and watched. Although they were never found in possession of any taser, the department took the word of four inmates who came forward making the allegations.  The two officers were placed on administrative leave back in October and even then they weren't told why.

"So while upon him (Internal Affairs officer Jeff Limo) serving me, we went outside and he noticed my new truck and he said, 'That's your new truck?', and I said, 'Yeah', and he said, 'Well, good luck making payments.' Right then, I knew this already fishy already," Gill recalled.

The two were then called in for several interviews and denied any involvement or knowledge of any assault on any inmates. Gill said he has never used a taser on any inmate, and he never saw any coworker do so. Gill asserts that he was never even served properly with the notice of proposed adverse action.  Instead of physically serving it on the employee, DepCor mailed it to his house.

"He could have came to my place of work and served me...at DOC," he shared. When asked if he was ever served at the prison, Gill replied, "No, they decided to just mail it out."

When the two returned to work after the 20 days of admin leave, Gill filed an official misconduct complaint after hearing that he was being blamed for being a snitch. "Sergeant M.U. Maratita decided to tell the whole platoon that I was the one who sent in pictures concerning the foot massage, so she pointed out me already without any proof. So I've been getting harassing calls at work and stuff because that's why I filed an official misconduct complaint," he explained.

His complaint didn't just name his supervisor, but also Limo. Gill alleged Limo had a conflict of interest because of an incident in 1994 where Martinez wrote an incident report that resulted in Limo being implicated for allegedly assaulting an inmate. Limo was eventually cleared of any wrongdoing.

Said Gill, "The complaint I made against Maratita to him, he never looked into it." He continued, "Limo is not supposed to be part of this investigation at all. He should recuse himself because of the incident between he and Mike Martinez."

During a press conference Thursday, Limo said another IA officer handled the interview with Martinez, but only after he personally interviewed both officers. "He did file a letter of interest of complaint to our office, but he did not pursue it with Internal Affairs," he stated.

Gill disagrees and says management and IA are picking and choosing what is investigated in the department, asserting, "This is something that shouldn't be let go. The director said this was a hard thing to determine. It's a hard decision to make but he made it within less than 24 hours."

As we reported, DepCor is still investigating the discovery of a taser on another corrections officer.  This particular officer not only admitted that he was in possession of the banned item but that he was coerced into naming Gill as being involved in the taser incident, even though he had never seen or heard of one.

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