Ex-jail deputy who admitted abusing female inmates gets probation
A former Wasatch County sheriff's deputy who pleaded guilty to physically abusing two women while working at the county's jail will spend three years on probation, a federal judge decided Friday.
U.S. District Court Judge David Sam also ruled that Christopher Stein Epperson will not have to pay any fines in connection with his crimes.
Epperson pleaded guilty in August to two counts of deprivation of rights under the color of law. He admitted that in December 2009 and September 2010 he caused bodily injury to the women by touching their breasts; he also touched one inmate's genitals. Each count carried a potential maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.
Epperson initially faced nine counts related to violating the womens' rights and four counts of unauthorized access to a computer. He was fired from his position with the Wasatch County Jail in October 2010.
Both victims filed civil lawsuits, consolidated in one case, that name Epperson, the Wasatch County Jail and the Utah Department of Corrections as defendants. The Wasatch County Sheriff's Department already has been dismissed as a defendant.
A hearing in the civil lawsuit is set for March 3 before Judge Sam.