Most At-Risk Inmates: Police or Child Molesters or Both? 

click to enlarge street06_fuller_200.jpg

If “Law and Order” has taught us anything, it's that being a cop in the clink makes you deeply unpopular with other inmates. Being a child molester can be just as bad, so imagine the difficulties faced by a former officer incarcerated for a sex crime against a child.

Those charged with crimes are of course innocent until proven guilty, but that potentially plummeting social stock may weigh heavily on the minds of state police Capt. Edward L. Hope Jr. and Virginia Commonwealth University Police Chief Willie B. Fuller, both of whom were charged with sex crimes in late January.

Hope was arrested at Virginia State Police headquarters Jan. 26 and charged with forcibly sodomizing a girl younger than 13. Fuller was picked up in a police sting Jan. 30 after authorities say the 14-year-old girl he thought he was chatting with online turned out to be a detective with Chesterfield Police Department.

Both men are out on bail and awaiting trial, but if the cases don't go their way, their life as convicts will be more complex.

Prison populations organize themselves into hierarchies, says Ilona Gravers, a psychologist who works to rehabilitate sex offenders around Winchester.

“The No. 1, top of the food chain, is someone who's committed murder,” she says. “They can intimidate anyone around them. The most unpopular ones are the child molesters.”

Larry Traylor, a spokesman for the Virginia Department of Corrections, says that a police officer, like any inmate who may have a lot of enemies in jail, would be handled carefully.

Such an inmate may end up in protective custody or a special unit “with other inmates of the same status. [They may] have a cell to themselves and not mingle with other inmates in the facility,” Traylor says. “We may also look at sending him out of state.”

Once out of jail and in rehabilitation, Graver says coordinating treatment can get tricky too.

“We try not to put a police officer in group therapy,” she says. “If the other guys are offenders, they tend not to like police very much.”


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

  • Re: Six Things to Know About New VCU Men's Basketball Coach Mike Rhoades

    • Will Wade was VCU's 100th sellout.
      Definitely an upgrade. Welcome home, Coach Rhodes and family.

    • on March 22, 2017
  • Re: The 2016 Richmond Power List

    • I am 50 years old and I was told I had COPD 10 years ago…

    • on March 22, 2017
  • Re: Jackson Ward Residents Debate Bike Lane Proposal

    • I am a Jackson Ward resident. I bike to work. I strongly support bike lanes…

    • on March 22, 2017
  • More »
  • Latest in News and Features

    More by Amy Biegelsen

    Copyright © 2017 Style Weekly
    Richmond's alternative for news, arts, culture and opinion
    All rights reserved
    Powered by Foundation