Warden at Dade Correctional Institute put on administrative leave

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Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Mike Crews put Jerry Cummings, warden of the Dade Correctional Institution, on administrative leave after a tour on Thursday of the Florida City jail where inmate Darren Rainey died in 2012 under suspicious circumstances.

Crews planned to meet with Miami-Dade police as they probe Rainey’s death when guards allegedly forced him in a scalding water shower as punishment.

“I am troubled by the allegations surrounding Dade Correctional Institution and feel a change at the facility is necessary for restoring accountability across the department,” Crews said in a statement. “This morning I also met with correctional officers in the facility and underscored that the integrity of the department will not be compromised by any bad actions.”

Correctional staff members who do not report any knowledge of abuse are “equally guilty,” Crews added. “We will take action whenever and wherever needed to ensure our facilities are secure and we are asking the Miami-Dade Police Department to quickly provide us with the results of their investigation.”

After the Miami Herald reported in May on the death of Rainey and other inmates, the DOC has been under intense scrutiny. Crews announced plans tour correctional facilities across the state to evaluate operations.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.