CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin struck a nerve with a former corrections officer when he suggested Monday evening that prison staff are easily manipulated by inmates.
Toobin and former corrections officer Anthony Gangi appeared on Anderson Cooper 360 to discuss reports that New York prison escapees Richard Matt and David Sweat had planned to kill prison worker Joyce Mitchell‘s husband.
“Correction officers are often very poorly paid, and they are not very well trained, so you have people who are vulnerable to start with,” Toobin asserted. “And it starts with very minor requests — ‘Oh, bring me food, bring me cigarettes’ — and then the grooming process continues. And that’s what leads to situations like this.”
Gangi took offense, immediately firing back: “Anybody can be the manipulator,” he said. “It’s not that we’re vulnerable, it has nothing to do with us getting paid less, has nothing to do with any of that. It has to deal with — first of all, we’re professionals, and second thing is we have a job to do.” He added that media portrayal of corrections officers has contributed to such individuals not having a favorable reputation with the general public.
“So for you to say that, you are belittling a profession that’s in the shadows,” Gangi continued. “It’s insulting… and when you say something like that — for people who’ve been in the shadows so long — we get frustrated!”
Watch the clip below, via CNN:
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