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Press Release

Inmates Indicted For Assaulting An Officer At The Metropolitan Detention Center

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – On February 3, 2021, a federal grand jury returned a one-count indictment charging Héctor Maldonado Maldonado and Miguel Santana Avilés with assaulting a federal officer, announced W. Stephen Muldrow, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) with the collaboration of the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) are in charge of the investigation of the case.

On August 20, 2020, a BOP officer at the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) in Guaynabo was conducting the daily lock-down procedure and inmate count. The officer found that inmate Maldonado was not in his assigned cell. Instead, the officer saw inmate Santana alone in the cell.  The officer ordered Santana to exit.  At this point, Maldonado rushed to the cell and began yelling at the officer, striking him in the face with his fist.  Santana then grabbed the officer from behind in a bear hug and pinned his arms to his side.  Maldonado put the officer in a headlock and continued to forcefully strike him in the face and head.  The officer was able to activate his body alarm, and other officers intervened.  The officer suffered bodily injuries, including multiple contusions to his face, ear, head and neck.  

Assistant U.S. Attorney Luis A. Valentin of the Violent Crimes and National Security Section is in charge of the prosecution of the case. If convicted, the defendant faces up to 20 years in prison.  

An indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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Updated February 4, 2021

Violent Crime