Two former prison guards and their supervisor have been charged with counts of cruelty to prisoners after forcing them to listen to ‘Baby Shark’.
On numerous occasions, inmates at Oklahoma County jail were forced to listen to the repetitive children’s song on repeat for over two hours.
While listening, at least four inmates were handcuffed against a wall and forced to stand for the duration of the punishment.
The song was played at high volume through a computer.
One inmate, according to court records, was even subjected to this at 3am in the morning.
Christian Miles and Gregory Butler, former Oklahoma County detention officers, were charged on Monday with misdemeanour offences of cruelty to prisoners, corporal punishment to a prisoner and conspiracy on Monday.
Their supervisor was also charged for letting it happen.
Miles and Butler have resigned from their positions and their supervisor, Christopher Raymond Hendershott, has retired.
The punishment of the inmates took place in November and December 2019.
Investigators said in an affidavit that the song was used “as a means to discipline inmates and teach them a lesson because they felt that disciplinary action with the Detention Centre was not working in correcting the behaviour of inmates.”
They later added that playing the music was “a joke” between the two former guards and contributed towards “undue emotional stress” being put on the prisoners.
The wildly popular song, which The New York Times called ‘despised by parents’, has been used in the past as a form of punishments.
A Florida city used it to deter homeless people from sleeping in parks.