An Alger County Sheriff's Department Deputy will serve twelve months of probation after pleading no contest to a charge of assaulting an inmate in the county jail. The deputy, 42-year-old William Carlson, was charged with one misdemeanor count of assault and battery. Carlson entered his no contest plea in Alger County District Court on Thursday morning.
While 55-year-old George Young was in the county jail, Carlson assaulted him after finding out somebody he knew was allegedly sexually assaulted by Young. Young is facing seven counts of criminal sexual conduct stemming from his work as a chiropractor in Munising.
Carlson was facing a 93-day jail sentence, but that was delayed for twelve months. Defense Attorney Karl Numinen represented Carlson.
"What (the delay of sentence) means, is at the end of his probation, assuming he completes the terms of probation adequately, then the charges are dismissed and there's no conviction on his record. He has no other criminal record whatsoever," Numinen said.
Due to conflicts of interest with Alger County officials, the court proceedings involving Carlson were handled by Marquette County District Judge Dennis Girard and Delta County Prosecutor Steve Parks.
Carlson was placed on administrative leave on December 31, 2012. The county does not have an administrative leave policy in place, so Carlson received his full salary since the start of his leave.
Carlson's future employment status with the Alger County Sheriff's Department is unknown. County Sheriff Bob Hughes was unavailable for comment on Thursday because he was attending an off-site training.
Carlson was placed on administrative leave on December 31, 2012. The county does not have an administrative leave policy in place, so Carlson received his full salary since the start of his leave.According to county records that TV6 obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, Carlson has been paid $10,964.16 since his leave began. TV6 has also filed a FOIA request to receive a copy of the Alger County Sheriff's Department's personnel policies. Carlson's future employment status with the department is unknown. County Sheriff Bob Hughes was unavailable for comment on Thursday because he was attending an off-site training. Meantime, Carlson's pay situation has led the Alger County Board of Commissioners to consider the creation of an administrative leave policy. Commission Chair Jerry Doucette said the county is currently reviewing the policies that other counties have in place.
"We can't continue on without a leave policy," Doucette said, citing the financial impact on the county, especially considering the overtime wages paid to other deputies during Carlson's leave.
Young is currently scheduled for a four-day jury trial beginning on October 28.