OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The former Oklahoma County jail guards accused of torturing inmates with the children’s song, “Baby Shark,” have been sentenced to probation and fines after pleading no contest to several of the charges.
In 2020, former detention officers Christian Miles and Gregory Butler, and their supervisor, Christopher Hendershott, were charged with four counts of cruelty to prisoners, four counts of corporal punishment to an inmate, and four counts of conspiracy.
In 2019, Miles and Butler allegedly pulled at least five inmates out of their cells one at a time late at night to be handcuffed, forced in a ‘standing stress position’ in a booth and listen to ‘Baby Shark’ on repeat at a very loud volume for hours on end.
Court documents state Miles and Butler used the booth to discipline inmates, “and teach them a lesson because they felt that disciplinary action within the Detention Center was not working in correcting the behavior of the inmates.”
The documents also state Miles told investigators that “the inmates often ‘pissed off’ Butler which evidence suggests led to those inmates being taken to of their cells/pods and mistreated.”
Hendershott allegedly learned about the mistreatment but did nothing to help the inmates or discipline the officers.
A federal lawsuit was filed in 2021 by some of the impacted inmates against the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office, the Oklahoma County Criminal Justice Authority, the former detention officers, and the Board of County Commissioners.
One of those plaintiffs was re-arrested in 2022 and died in custody. The medical examiner determined he died from an accidental fentanyl overdose.
Now, Miles and Butler have been sentenced for their roles in the alleged “Baby Shark” abuse.
The men were each fined $200 and must pay $300 in victims’ compensation. They were also placed on probation for two years, banned from working in law enforcement, and must complete 40 hours of community service.
Court records do not indicate a plea or sentence for Hendershott.