An officer at the Lowndes County Jail is back at work after an inmate attacked her, and it would have been much worse if other inmates hadn't defended her. Two fellow officers who were supposed to be monitoring the cells have been fired.
13 seconds, that's all it took for officer Pam NeSmith to experience a brutal beating.
"He sprained my wrist and bruised my arm. Somehow during the time I covered my head, and I've got three staples in the back of my head where he hit me with the handset from the phone that they use for visitation and then I have my black eye where he punched me in the face with his fist," said NeSmith.
NeSmith was delivering mail to inmates last Thursday when 41-year-old Roy Smith snapped and attacked her. Smith was sentenced to prison for 60 years without parole for shooting his girlfriend and daughter in 2010, they both survived.
Smith recently asked for a new trial and was transported to the county jail to go before a judge.
"I wasn't scared at the time because I was just worried about staying alive. But I mean I've been here almost 15 years and this is the first time this has ever happened," said NeSmith.
Inside the jail there are eight dormitories. NeSmith was delivering mail to one which had 32 inmates inside. And a couple of those inmates even stepped in to try to prevent the attack.
"If they hadn't I would probably be dead or I'd be hurt a lot worse than I am," said NeSmith.
And the officer who was supposed to be monitoring the cells in the control room was talking on the phone to another officer who should have been monitoring on the ground. Marius Floyd and Titania Proctor have since been fired.
Sheriff Chris Prine said, "He never even looked up to see that she was being attacked so my action towards him and the person that he was talking to, the distraction, the very next morning I terminated both of them."
As for NeSmith, she says she knows the risks that come with the job. She was back at work yesterday sorting through the mail.
Roy Smith is currently in isolation at the Lowndes County Jail and is charged with aggravated battery on a correctional officer.