Jail guards ‘chained prisoners and made them listen to Baby Shark as punishment’

Two jail guards have been accused of chaining up inmates and forcing them to listen to the song "Baby Shark" on repeat.

Gregory Cornell Butler Jr and Christian Charles Miles, both 21, have been charged with misdemeanour counts of cruelty to a prisoner in Oklahoma, US.

Their supervisor Christopher Raymond Hendershott, 50, was also charged.

Investigators say the guards forced at least five inmates at a county jail to enter an empty attorney visitation room alone where they were handcuffed to the wall.

They were then forced to stand and listen as Baby Shark, a repetitive tune that climbed to the top of the UK charts in 2018, was played loudly through a computer for at least two hours.

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The prisoners were subjected to the aural torment on at least five separate occasions throughout November and December 2019, according to an affidavit.

Two of the victims had been dragged from their beds at 2am or 3am in the morning.

Investigators said the guards used the song "as a means to discipline inmates and teach them a lesson because they felt that disciplinary action within the Detention Centre was not working in correcting the behaviour of the inmates".

"The playing of the music was said to be a joke between Miles and Butler," investigators added.

They said the song put "undue emotional stress on the inmates who were most likely already suffering".

Butler and Miles have reportedly admitted to playing the music as punishment and have since resigned.

Hendershott, who is accused of letting his subordinates torment the prisoners, has retired.

On Monday all three former employees of the Oklahoma County Sheriff's Department were charged with cruelty to prisoners, corporal punishment to an inmate and conspiracy.

Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater said he would have filed felony charges rather than a misdemeanour if he had been able to.

"It was unfortunate that I could not find a felony statute to fit this fact scenario," Prater told local newspaper The Oklahoman.

"I would have preferred filing a felony on this behaviour."

Baby Shark, and its accompanying music video, has been a smash hit in recent years due to the song's catchy tune and repetitive lyrics, which describe a family of sharks along with the words "doo doo doo doo doo doo".

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