Planet Princeton

Two Mercer County correction officers indicted in inmate assault case

A Mercer County grand jury returned indictments last week against two county correction officers in connection with the assault of an inmate in May of last year.

Isaac Wood III, age 41, of Ewing, and Trachell Syphax, age 32, of Trenton, were each indicted on two counts of second-degree official misconduct and one count of third-degree tampering with public records or information. The grand jury voted not to indict Wood on
the aggravated assault charge.

On May 11, 2016, while on duty at the Mercer County Correction Center in Hopewell, Wood allegedly punched an inmate in the face, causing him to fall to the floor. Wood allegedly then kicked the inmate multiple times. An investigation revealed that the inmate did not provoke or resist the officer, law enforcement officials said. Syphax allegedly witnessed the assault and did not intervene. The inmate was transported to the hospital for treatment. Both officers allegedly filed false police reports regarding Wood’s use of force on the inmate.

According to correction officials, Wood and Syphax were engaged to be married at the time of the offense. They have since married. Both were suspended without pay shortly after the May 11 incident.

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

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