Almost seven years ago the Pennsylvania prison system was sued after allegations of officers physically abusing inmates surfaced at State Correctional Institution in Pittsburgh. Of the six officials charged in these incidents, all but one faced allegations of physically assaulting inmates. Guards and nurses among other prison staff are in complete control over the lives of people who are incarcerated. That power dynamic can often lead to the mistreatment of prisoners. It's often hard to see convicted criminals as victims in these situations.
In recent years, there have been numerous news stories exposing the excessive use of force by police officers in cities across the country. In many of these incidences, outrage over acts of police misconduct grew after eye witnesses captured and shared videos of the events via social media.
In early January, disturbing video footage surfaced on Facebook that showed a female Philadelphia police officer throwing a 16-year-old girl to the ground and repeatedly punching her. The assault occurred while police officers were responding to reports of a fight involving approximately 30 people in the city's Kingsessing neighborhood.