Former officer to be sentenced in beating case

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A former Woonsocket police officer who pleaded guilty to beating up a teenage boy is preparing to be sentenced.

John H. Douglas will learn his fate Friday morning in U.S. District Court in Providence.

Douglas pleaded guilty in June to a federal civil rights charge, admitting that he beat up the boy in a police station stairwell in September 2009. He has since resigned from the force.

Prosecutors say the beating followed an altercation between the boy and several officers.

Federal prosecutors are recommending an 18-month sentence, but Douglas's lawyer, Tom Briody, is asking that his client avoid prison altogether. Briody says Douglas was an excellent police officer who made a bad mistake.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you.