The Richmond Register

July 30, 2013

Three charged with assaulting inmate

By Sarah Hogsed
Register News Writer

RICHMOND — Three men were charged with felony assault Monday at the Madison County Detention Center after another inmate was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center for treatment.

Justin White, 20; Tony Gay, 22; and Boyd Neeley, 19, were charged with second-degree assault, according to Jailer Doug Thomas.

The charge carries a possible sentence of five to 10 years in prison.

Thomas said surveillance cameras helped authorities determine who was involved in the attack although the cameras are not present in individual cells.

White, Gay and Neeley were seen entering a cell Monday night occupied by 41-year-old Billy Shearer. Afterward, Shearer had to be taken by ambulance to the UK Medical Center for treatment of nonlife-threatening injuries, according to Thomas.

Shearer remained hospitalized Tuesday morning.

Shearer has been at the jail on a contempt-of-court charge since July 11.

White has been in the detention center since March 3 facing a charge of first-degree robbery and fourth-degree assault.

Gay is jailed on a first-degree assault charge in connection with a shooting last year in Richmond. He has been incarcerated since March 28.

Neeley was sentenced earlier this month to 10 years in prison for manufacturing methamphetamine.

While fights are not uncommon at the detention center, or any jail, the severe overcrowding at the Madison County Detention Center has contributed to increased tensions, Thomas said.

“It makes problems a lot worse,” the jailer said.

On Tuesday morning, the 195-bed jail was housing 280 prisoners.

The cameras help in determining who has committed offenses, and Thomas said he hopes to install more if his budget permits.

The jailer also pointed out that often people are booked into the jail who may have grudges against other inmates of which the staff are not aware.

“A lot of times (the inmates) won’t tell us,” Thomas said.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@richmondregister.com or 624-6694.