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Press Release

Maryland Correctional Officer Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy and Destruction of Records Offenses Related to Cover-Up of Excessive Force Incident

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

A correctional officer at the Eastern Correctional Institution (ECI) in Westover, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to an information charging him with one count of conspiring to obstruct justice and one count of destruction of records, with the purpose of covering up evidence that a fellow officer at ECI had unlawfully assaulted an inmate.

According to court documents, on July 12, 2021, while working at the ECI, David Quillen, 37, learned that another officer had used force against an inmate. Upon learning of the incident, Quillen responded to the scene with a video camera and began recording the inmate. While Quillen filmed him, the inmate asserted that he had been assaulted by a correctional officer — Samuel Warren — for no reason. The inmate also cried and was visibly injured with blood on his face.

After Quillen stopped filming, he and other officers watched the video Quillen had filmed. While watching the video, a supervisory officer commented that the video did not look good for Warren and indicated that the video should be deleted. Warren agreed and Quillen and other officers agreed to lie about the deletion. Understanding that the video contained evidence that Warren’s use of force against the inmate had been unlawful, Quillen deleted the video.

Following the deletion, Quillen lied about what happened to the video, including to supervisors at ECI and to state and federal investigators.

Warren has since admitted that he unlawfully assaulted the inmate and has entered guilty pleas to both federal offenses related to that assault.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, U.S. Attorney Erek L. Barron for the District of Maryland and Acting Special Agent in Charge Joseph Rothrock of the FBI Baltimore Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI Baltimore Field Office is investigating the case, with assistance from the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Marquardt for the District of Maryland and Trial Attorney Erin Monju of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section are prosecuting the case, with assistance from Special Legal Counsel Mark Blumberg of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section.

Updated February 22, 2024

Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 24-208