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Inmate sues over punishment

An inmate at the Hernando Correctional Institution is suing the state Department of Corrections, saying that she was punished unfairly after she pleaded guilty to threatening a corrections officer.

Abbie Ross says that on Jan. 13, an officer became abusive toward her while they were in the prison kitchen, and she threatened to cut herself with a knife if the officer did not stop. Ross was charged with making threats, and, according to the lawsuit, agreed to plead guilty with the understanding that she would serve no extra time for the offense because the threats were made against herself.

Instead, the lawsuit contends, Ross spent 23 days in confinement after the officer learned of the deal. Ross, who is serving time for robbery, driving on a revoked or suspended license and battery on a detainee, according to state records, is asking that her sentence for uttering threats be vacated. Corrections officials declined to comment.