Penn State

Inmate formerly held at Benner state prison found not guilty of harassing employee

An inmate formerly held at Benner state prison was found not guilty of harassing an employee at the facility in a jury trial before Judge Pamela Ruest on Monday.

Francisco Santos, 34, was accused by a counselor at the prison of spitting in her face through the bars of his cell in March 2014. He was charged by state police with aggravated harassment by a prisoner, a felony.

“I know Mr. Santos is really thankful to the people of Centre County for believing him,” said Richard Settgast, Santos’ public defender.

Settgast said video footage was used to determine his client’s innocence.

According to court documents, Santos pleaded guilty to third-degree murder in York County in 2013 and was sentenced to 20 to 40 years in state prison. He is currently held at Houtzdale state prison.

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