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Durham inmate admits she started fight that got officers fired

Posted December 8, 2015

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— Although she admits starting a fight with detention officers, Genapher Page said the two women who held her down and punched her in the head went too far.

The fight at the Durham County Jail cost Officer Anita Louise Alston and Officer Rachel L. Smith their jobs. A supervisory review determined the pair “utilized force that appeared to be beyond the amount reasonably necessary to restrain a detainee,” the Durham County Sheriff's Office said in a statement released Monday.

"I don't feel no sympathy for them that they got fired," Page said. "I think that's what they deserve. I don't think any inmate or detainee should be assaulted by an officer."

Page said the incident happened in September when she was jailed on a felony probation violation charge that stemmed from an armed robbery case. She said Alston, Smith and a third officer came to her cell to take her to booking.

According to Page, she and Smith had a prior run-in. She said she was being escorted by the officers when her emotions boiled over.

"Smith came to my left side and I elbowed her," Page said, before the third officer, a man, forced her to the ground.

"(He) pretty much held me down while Alston and Smith are just hitting me in the head," she said. "Mind you, I've got handcuffs so I can't even defend myself."

Page said it took another inmate to seek out additional guards to stop the incident.

Alston and Smith were fired and, following a separate investigation, were charged with simple assault and misdemeanor obstruction of justice.

“Detention officers work in a very difficult and complex environment. Many times they work in a pod and supervise 50 or more persons, some of whom are hostile and suffer from mental difficulties. It is important that detention officers follow sheriff’s office guidelines when interacting with inmate population,” Sheriff Michael Andrews said in a statement.

Page was charged with felony assault inflicting physical injury on a detention employee, resisting an officer and communicating threats in connection with the December incident. Page remains in the Durham County Jail.


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  • Walter Bartlett Dec 11, 2015
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    Did I really just read, "although she admits starting a fight with detention officers, Genapher Page said" FOLLOWED BY " Page said. "I think that's what they deserve. I don't think any inmate or detainee should be assaulted by an officer."

    Seriously?!?! Is this criminal that dense? No officer should ever be assaulted by an inmate. Well I don't believe anyone should have to go through an armed robbery either - but clearly Ms. Page doesn't think that's an issue.

    How about she stays out of jail, acts like a civilized woman, and keeps her hands to herself. But nah - that'd be too hard - she'll be a career criminal aka burden to the taxpayers for the rest of her life.

  • White Cross Dec 9, 2015

    Anita and Rachel need to go get a job as N.C. Correctional officers. They beat,kick,slam into concrete restrained inmates so bad they have to take them to public hospitals for injuries. Nothing happens to guards. Hospitals are required to report assaults,but they cover up felony assaults for the guards.

  • Rhonda Hammer Dec 9, 2015
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    I wonder why the male officer involved was not fired.

  • Dmitry Suemeov Dec 9, 2015
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    Simply not true. When you commit a crime and get caught and convicted,.... most of your freedoms and rights are gone. The only right you have is to serve out your time and hope you remain intact while serving it.

  • BigWillie Johnson Dec 9, 2015
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    Roscoe you make the most outlandish statements. Do you really believe a criminal has more rights than the basic citizen. Based upon your statement, then a criminal as the right to walk up to the jailer and asked to be let free, or to order a seven course meal. No, once your in jail tyou are pretty much contained by the system and fed unappetizing food. It is better to gain knowledge than to spout out non-factual half-truths. People will take you more seriously. As of now, not so much.

    in this case she may have instigated the fight, but I expect better out of LE professionals in dealing with criminals. They took the job, so they should have been trained in the perils, and be given the expectations of how to deal with criminals. They acquiesced to the behavior of the criminal, making them one as well.

  • Roy Hinkley Dec 9, 2015
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    That is quite untrue.

  • Rosco Coltrane Dec 8, 2015
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    It is a well known fact, that as soon as you commit a crime, you instantly have more rights than the typical law abiding citizen. It is sad, but it is true.

  • Victoria Clark Dec 8, 2015
    user avatar

    What happen to the race labeling of the officers WRAL?

  • Victoria Clark Dec 8, 2015
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    How in the heck is defending yourself a warrant to be fired... It's a shame how criminals get away with there bad behavior... I sometimes think jail is just a free vacation for some... No she wouldn't feel bad making someone loose their job as she doesn't understand the productive non violent life.

  • LetsBeFair Dec 8, 2015

    So whats the point? Expected behavior of someone in Jail to be handing out daisies?