Former Leavenworth inmate sentenced for attack on prison guard

A former Leavenworth inmate was sentenced today to 15 years in federal prison for attacking a Leavenworth prison guard with a pair of scissors, said U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister.

The defendant also was ordered to pay $18,692 in restitution.

Richard A. James Jr., 27, who is in federal custody, pleaded guilty to one count of assaulting a federal officer.

In his plea, he admitted he attacked Joseph Brian Wilson, a unit manager for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.

James admitted he sharpened the ends of a pair of grooming scissors and stabbed Wilson.

Corrections officers had to pull James off Wilson to stop the attack. James later told investigators he wanted a “change of scenery” and hoped he would be moved to another prison because of the attack.

McAllister commended the FBI and Assistant U.S. Attorney David Zabel for their work on the case.

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