Prior Prisoner Abuse Alleged Against Charles Graner

Today the AP reports on alleged prior prisoner abuse by Abu Ghraib prison guard Charles Graner (purported father of the child expected by Lynndie England.)

His ex-wife once accused him of dragging her out of a room by her hair and trying to throw her down the stairs during a fight over their breakup. At the Pennsylvania prison where he worked as a low-level guard in civilian life, the Army reservist was accused in two lawsuits of brutality. In one, an inmate said Graner planted a razor blade in a plate of his potatoes. The lawsuits were dismissed and no charges were ever filed in the dispute with his wife, but the accusations continue to haunt Graner now that he faces court-martial in the abuse scandal.

We reported Graner's ex-wife's comments here:

Graner married Staci Dean in 1990, after she had become pregnant with the first of their two children. Their marriage ended in 2002 in a bitter divorce. Police were called to the home in March 2001, after the couple had separated. In Fayette County court papers, Staci Graner, who has since remarried and declined to be interviewed, reported that her husband came into the room where she was sleeping and yanked her head by the hair, banged her head against a wall, and tried to throw her down the steps. Criminal charges were not filed.

We also reported this abuse allegation a few days ago :

Nicholas Yarris, the Pennsylvania death row inmate who was exonerated by DNA evidence and released from prison after serving 22 years ome months ago, knows Charles A. Graner, Jr., one of the prison guards who's charged in Iraq,and says he's a bad apple-- violent and abusive-- and that he had been reprimanded. More on Graner here. In a new press release we received by e-mail, Yarris says:

According to Yarris, Graner was responsible for moving prisoners within the facility and was "violent, abusive, arrogant and mean-spirited" toward Yarris and other inmates. Yarris said he knew of several instances in which Graner was involved in physically assaulting prisoners. Yarris also states that Graner was reprimanded by his superiors on several occasions and was disliked by both prisoners and other prison employees. Upon learning that Graner - a reservist called to active duty in Iraq in May 2003 who receives a $500 per month stipend from the DOC - was given a supervisory role at Abu Ghraib based on his civilian training and experience in Pennsylvania, Yarris expressed disgust.

"He was at the bottom level of prison guards," Yarris states, "so he must've done a good job bragging to the military about what a 'big shot' he was at [SCI-]Greene." Yarris also confirmed that, prior to being taken out of their cells, prisoners held in Administrative Custody at SCI-Greene were forced to strip naked in front of the transport team, lift their genitals, and bend over for a visual "inspection." The sexual humiliation of the prisoners at SCI-Greene is eerily similar to the tactics used by military personnel under Graner's supervision against Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghra

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