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Inmate pleads guilty to assault on corrections officer

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 March 2020 at 11:28 am

ALBION – A former inmate at the Orleans Correctional Facility in Albion pleaded guilty to attempted assault in the second degree.

Michael Hawkins entered an Alford plea in Orleans County Court, where he maintained his innocence but didn’t want to risk going to trial and being found guilty of second-degree assault, which has a maximum sentence of 7 years in prison.

“I don’t want to take the chance of going to trial and being found guilty,” said Hawkins, who is now an inmate at Upstate Correctional Facility in Malone, Franklin County.

Hawkins, in court last week, acknowledged there was an incident between him and a corrections officer on Jan. 2, 2018. But he told Judge Sanford Church there wasn’t contact with the CO. The judge asked Hawkins if he intended to injure the corrections officer and Hawkins said, “No.”

District Attorney Joe Cardone said there is testimony and videotape of Hawkins where the footage shows him resisting corrections officers during an extraction procedure in Hawkins’ cell, which was done when the inmate allegedly wasn’t following the prison rules.

A corrections officer suffered a laceration to the face and was exposed to blood and bodily fluids from Hawkins, Cardone said.

The corrections officer suffered substantial pain and missed work for several months, Cardone said.

As part of the plea agreement, Hawkins will face a maximum of an additional 1 ½ to 3 years in prison. He is scheduled to be sentenced on May 28.

• In court this morning, Judge Church arraigned Derrick Hildreth, 42, of Albion for two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree. Hildreth on Dec. 5 allegedly had cocaine with the intent to sell it. He was released on his own recognizance this morning.

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