MIDDLETON, Mass — Two inmates at the Middleton Jail and House of Correction have been indicted on serious charges for their role in an Oct. 22 altercation that injured two correctional officers. (Story here)
The indictments were handed down last week by an Essex County Superior Court grand jury. The two men are:
- Jorge Delgado-Medina, 26, of Melrose, charged with assault and battery and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
- Adrian Corniel De La Cruz, 18, of Lawrence, charged with two counts of armed assault with intent to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and assault with a dangerous weapon.
A conviction on a charge of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon carries a state prison sentence of not more than 10 years. A conviction on a charge of assault and battery with intent to murder carries a state prison sentence of not more than 20 years.
“We will not tolerate attacks on our officers. We will prosecute and we will seek justice,” said Essex County Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger. “This incident demonstrates the danger our officers face each and every day. For me, officer safety is the top priority.”
Two inmates and two officers sustained minor injuries during the altercation. All were taken to local hospitals and treated, but none of the injuries required hospitalization. Three shanks were immediately discovered in the vicinity of the altercation, and eight more weapons were recovered during a subsequent week-long search of the entire Middleton facility.
Sheriff Coppinger said there has been an increase in inmate aggression at Essex County correctional facilities as the numbers of those waiting to be tried on violent and gang-related crime continues to increase. As of Jan. 1, 2023, 40 percent of the county’s detainees were facing or being held on violent charges, including murder, attempted murder, rape, and assault. The Essex County Sheriff’s Department is responsible for the custody of the largest incarcerated population outside of Boston, with a daily average of more than 1,100 inmates.
Four other incarcerated individuals were previously charged in the incident. They are:
- Julio Cruz, 24, of Lawrence, charged with two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and assault with a dangerous weapon.
- Johan Aquino, 22, of Lawrence, charged with assault and battery.
- Luis Perlera, 19, of Lunenberg, charged with assault and battery.
- Lennox Pierre-Louis, 21, of Roxbury, charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.