News and Press Releases

Former Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, Jail Major Indicted For Assaulting An Inmate

November 4 , 2011

PITTSBURGH, Pa. - James Donis, 47, a former major at the Allegheny County, Penn., Jail, and a resident of Glenshaw, Penn., has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges stemming from an April 2010 incident in which Donis allegedly punched an inmate in the face, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

The three-count indictment charges Donis with a felony civil rights violation, falsifying documents related to the incident, and making false statements to an agent of the FBI.

If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison on the civil rights charge, a fine of $250,000, or both; a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison on the obstruction of justice charge, a fine of $250,000, or both; and a maximum penalty of five years in prison on the false statements charge, a fine of $250,000, or both.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy L. Johnston and Civil Rights Division Trial Attorney Patricia A. Sumner are prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The FBI conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case.

An indictment is an accusation.  A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Return to Top





USAO Homepage
USAO Briefing Room
Justice 101
Opioid Overdose Reduction Action Plan
National Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Western District of Pennsylvania

honors October 2014 as

National Domestic Violence
Awareness Month

If you or someone you know
has been a victim of domestic violence please contact the
National Domestic Violence
Hotline at:



Text PGHOD to Tip411 (847411)
Victim Witness Assistance

Making sure that victims of federal crimes are treated with compassion, fairness and respect.

Stop Fraud

Protect yourself from fraud, and report suspected cases of financial fraud to local law enforcement.

Project Safe Childhood

Help us combat the proliferation of sexual exploitation crimes against children.