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November 22, 2013 at 3:04 PM

Don’t touch that dial when this jail inmate is watching football

A Seattle man with an obvious passion for football has been transferred from prison to the King County Jail on Friday to face charges that he caused another inmate’s broken arm after that man changed channels on a jail TV during halftime of a football game.

Cedric Cureaux, 48, who has a long criminal history in Washington and California, was being held in the King County Jail on drug and escape charges on Sept. 14, the day of the alleged incident, according to second-degree assault charges filed last week by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. He pleaded guilty to the drug and escape charges on Sept. 23 and was later transferred to the custody of the state Department of Corrections to begin serving a yearlong prison sentence, court records show.

According to charging documents, Cureaux had warned other inmates housed in his jail unit on Sept. 13 — a Friday — “that they were going to watch football all weekend,” and he “didn’t care if anyone got hurt if they changed the TV from football.”

Sure enough, the following afternoon the TV in the jail unit was tuned to a football game, say charging papers. During a halftime commercial break, a 51-year-old inmate changed the channel to a news program; Cureaux changed the channel back to football. The other inmate then switched the TV back to the news, the papers say.

Bad move.

That’s when Cureaux allegedly “hit him with open palms on the chest” in a gesture “like a push but with enough force to cause his body to rotate as he was knocked out of his shoes and fell to the ground,” according to the charging documents. The inmate put out his right arm to break his fall, and ended up with a broken arm and wrist, the papers say.

The injured inmate was taken to Harborview Medical Center, where pins were inserted into his wrist and his arm was put in a cast, the papers say.

Immediately after the incident, a jail officer saw that Cureaux was packing up his belongings in anticipation of being transferred to the predisciplinary housing unit on the jail’s 11th floor, according to the papers.

“Due to the jail culture,” several inmates who witnessed the alleged assault refused to say anything about it, but one man later told jail officials that Cureaux had threatened other inmates in the unit if they talked, charging papers say.

Because of his criminal history, Cureaux faces a potential prison sentence of five to seven years if convicted of second-degree assault, the papers say.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: assault, King County Jail, King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office

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