Jailers: 300 Pound Inmate Who Sued Jail for Starvation Caught Giving Away Sandwich

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A capital murder defendant who complained he wasn't being fed enough and lost about 100 pounds while in the Benton County Jail was allegedly caught giving away a bologna sandwich, jail officials said.

Jailers watched last Thursday as Broderick L. Laswell, 19, of Farmington wrapped the sandwich in toilet paper and attempt to slide it under a cell door, according to sheriff's department reports. Laswell denied the accusation.

Laswell last month filed a federal lawsuit, claiming his weight went from 413 pounds to 308 pounds since his arrest and that he was "being starved to death." Laswell and another man are charged with the slaying of Randy Walker, 47, of Garfield, who was beaten and stabbed to death before his house trailer was set aflame on Aug. 30.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for both defendants.

The report said Lt. Paul Carter saw Laswell eating lunch alone and looking between a corner cell and the observation window. Carter said Laswell wrapped the bologna and mustard sandwich in toilet paper and concealed it against his right thigh while walking to the corner cell.

As Laswell went to slide the sandwich under the cell door, Carter got on the intercom and asked him to bring the sandwich to him, according to the report. Laswell immediately began to eat the sandwich.

Laswell said he was giving away his sandwich but was going to receive another one later. Laswell refused to name the inmate involved in the transaction, the report said. A short time later, Laswell told deputies he was walking around the pod eating the sandwich. He also claimed he was never told by deputies to not trade food. The report said inmates are not allowed to trade food.

Capt. Hunter Petray told The Morning News that the incident was the first in which Laswell has been caught getting rid of food.

Laswell was given 10 days in lockdown as a punishment, the report said.

The jail says the company that handles food service provides cold meals that give inmates about 3,000 calories per day.

Brandon Lacy, 28, of Rogers and Laswell were arrested in September.

Laswell is to remain in lockdown until Monday.