3 Pa. teens charged in officer’s death allege mistreatment in prison

    Three teenagers charged in the death of a northeastern Pennsylvania police officer who fell 15 feet while chasing them are alleging mistreatment in the county prison.

    The 17-year-old defendants are charged as adults in Lackawanna County with second-degree murder in the July death of Scranton officer John Wilding, who jumped over a wall while chasing them in an armed robbery case.

    The Times-Tribune reports that court-appointed attorneys accuse the Lackawanna County Prison of cruel and unusual punishment, alleging that their clients are isolated almost all of the time. One defendant alleges that guards denied him a mattress for his first two weeks, saying “that’s how they treat cop-killers.”

    Warden Robert McMillan called accusations of retribution untrue, saying “I don’t believe my staff would do that.”

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