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Man sentenced to eight years for attacking corrections officer

Lexington, SC - Joshua Travis Rossman, 23, of Gaston, pled guilty to Assault and Battery – First Degree Wednesday in Lexington County for assaulting a correctional officer while in the Lexington County Detention Center on other unrelated charges. Rossman was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge William P. Keesley to eight (8) years in the South Carolina Department of Corrections followed by three (3) years of probation.

On January 5, 2019, while at the Detention Center, Rossman engaged in an argument with a correctional officer who was in the process of locking down the pod. Rossman subsequently punched the officer in the face. In an effort to retreat, the officer left the area chased by Rossman who punched the officer again. The officer eventually fell to the ground and lay there motionless. Rossman then took the officer’s Taser and pointed it at another officer who was attempting to provide assistance. After a brief standoff, Rossman surrendered, but continues his aggressive behavior. He was eventually subdued and placed in a restraint chair.

The officer was transported to the Lexington Medical Center Emergency Room for treatment. He sustained serious fractures to his knee and ankle as a result of the attack. He was in the hospital for over three weeks while he underwent several medical procedures. The officer has not returned to work since this assault occurred.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant Solicitor Bradley Young for the Eleventh Circuit Solicitor’s Office. Assistant Solicitor Young expressed to the Court that this incident is one of deep concern for the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department. This was due to the fact that it was such a serious attack on a correctional officer. During sentencing, the Sheriff’s Department and Detention Center Command Staff were present and showed their support for the injured correctional officer.

Rossman does have a prior conviction for Assault and Battery. He will be transported to the Department of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

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