Alger County Sheriff Deputy William Carlson has been terminated from the department as of Wednesday morning after he pled no contest to assaulting a jail inmate. County Sheriff Robert Hughes announced the termination in a statement.
The 42-year-old Carlson was charged with one misdemeanor count of assault and battery. Carlson entered his no contest plea in Alger County District Court on Thursday, May 16.
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. If he successfully completes his probation, the charge will be removed from his record.
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 of $10,964.16 since the start of his leave.
Young is currently scheduled for a four-day jury trial beginning on October 28. His attorney, Brandon Rickard of Marquette, did not wish to make any statement about Carlson's employment status on behalf of his client.
Read Sheriff Hughes' full statement below:
"This has been a complete and thorough investigation into a very unfortunate set of circumstances. The need for a special investigation into this matter lengthened the time taken to conclude this case. The entire process has taken longer than some average court cases because of the need for a special investigation. As in all criminal matters, the rights of all involved parties need to be protected. To ensure that this case was handled in the most fair and unbiased manner possible, the investigation was conducted by Mission Detectives from outside law enforcement agencies. Both the Alger County Prosecutor and the 93rd District Court Judge recognized this need as well and decided to remove themselves from this case.
The process of appointing a Special Prosecutor (first) and a Judge (second) takes time. Once all of these components were in place, the court process could proceed. In consultation with our risk management officials, Deputy Carlson was placed on administrative leave while this took place.
Upon conclusion of the investigation and court proceedings, Deputy Carlson has been terminated from employment with the Alger County Sheriff's Office. A copy of the termination notice has also been provided to the employees union as outlined in the labor agreement."