Raleigh Prison Warden Steps Down Accused Of Abusing Inmates

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The warden of North Carolina's Central Prison has stepped down following an internal review critical of conditions for inmates with mental illness under his supervision.

Correction Secretary Alvin Keller has disclosed that Central Prison Warden Gerald Branker retired Nov. 1 in the wake of an earlier review that found that inmates with serious mental disorders were often isolated for weeks, sometimes nude, in cells puddled with human waste.

The scathing report on conditions inside the prison's mental unit was first made public on Monday by The Associated Press.

Gov. Bev Perdue later called the report's contents "unacceptable."

DOC administrators had previously denied anyone was fired or disciplined over the internal review. Branker had worked at the Raleigh prison since 1979, starting as a correctional officer.

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