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Work camp hijinks went too far, lawsuit alleges

A federal complaint by a former state prison inmate claims he was tormented by a series of cruel pranks at the hands of a guard at a Botetourt County work camp.

The lawsuit reads like a list of frat house jokes that went too far. The guard allegedly lit firecrackers nearby while the inmate was working, put deer manure in the inmate’s chewing tobacco, and hid fish bait in the inmate’s work area. Hot sauce or habanera peppers were involved in some of the alleged pranks.

The suit, filed by Roanoke lawyer Melvin Williams, claims the bad behavior was countenanced by camp superintendent J.D. Terry.

By Peter Vieth

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