Jailer was cleared in use of force by investigation says attorney

Jailer was cleared in use of force by investigation says attorney »Play Video

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) - Last week, we told you the story about former Elmore County jailer Jason Mittleider.  He says he was fired after he reported his sergeant, Tom Robison for shoving an inmate.

Robison pleaded guilty to disturbing the peace which is a misdemeanor and got 100 hours of community service in lieu of 5 days in jail. He also was fined $250 and court costs. Robison will also be on probation for one year.

KBOI 2News asked former Idaho attorney general Dave Leroy to look at the video and asked him what's the difference from a misdemeanor battery and a felony battery.

"It can be something as light as that or something as heavy as a push that forces someone off balance and forces them to fall down as we saw on the tape," Leroy said. "A battery is a battery.  If there are consequential injuries of great note, if there are weapons involved then misdemeanor touchings can become felony touchings.

According to the prosecutor in this case, as bad as the video may look, there was no felony committed. "It list different types of conduct, the same with aggravated battery, in this case that conduct just wasn't there," said Deputy Idaho Attorney General Krista Howard.

Robison's attorney says that in an internal investigation by Elmore County, Robison was cleared on his use of force. But the jailer still faced criminal charges. Joe Filicetti, Robison's attorney said, "An officer is allowed to use that amount of force that is necessary to stop the situation. In this situation we ultimately pled to something.  it was disturbing the peace. So he's acknowledging that there was too much force used in this situation."

The prosecution says they accepted the plea rather than go to trial.  "The sentence for disturbing the peace is also the same for battery.  We got the same sentence that we were looking for under battery that we did with disturbing the peace it's just the titles different," Howard said.

The female inmate is still in the Elmore County Jail.  She was brought into the sentence hearing for Robison but she did not want to make a statement.  She would not talk about what happened. Tom Robison was on paid leave for four weeks and he lost his Sargent rank and pay.  He works as a door guard at the jail but has no contact with inmates.