Federal authorities in April indicted Hill on four counts of violating the civil rights of detainees in using the chairs, including on a juvenile. Gov. Brian Kemp suspended Hill from duty in June.
In August federal officials added a fifth charge against Hill for the alleged chair use. Hill has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Hill’s attorney Drew Findling did not return calls for comment.
Wayne Kendall, who represents Whitaker, called on the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department to take over the Clayton County Jail.
“The rash of excessive force cases recently arising at the Clayton County jail indicates a need for an in-depth investigation into the operations of that facility and a wholesale removal of the present administration, which not only includes a sheriff under criminal indictment but other senior staffers under similar indictment,” he said.
Whitaker’s litigation comes on the heels of a federal lawsuit filed in late August on behalf of Gabriel Arries, who alleges he also was confined to a restraint chair for four hours after being severely beaten by sheriff’s office deputies at the jail earlier this year.
In the Whitaker lawsuit, the complainant said that after being choked and pummeled, he “lost consciousness and sustained serious bruises, contusions and other injuries including having to have the braces on his teeth cut out of his lips from which they were imbedded due to the blows to his face.”
The suit also accused Deputy Winn of a history of violence, including a 2012 charge by Atlanta Police of battery with physical harm and an arrest in Clayton County in 2021 on a charge of cruelty to children.
After being put in the restraining chair, the lawsuit alleged that Sheriff Hill ordered Whitaker be given “nutraloaf” for three days. “Nutraloaf” is a meatloaf mixture that critics say is often used as punishment in jails and has been banned in at least three states.
The ingredients of “nutraloaf” vary from state to state, but often begins with ground beef and then is mixed into a loaf with a variety of foods, including beans, vegetables, unskinned potatoes, dry grits and oatmeal.