Area transient accused in gruesome attack on Strafford County Jail guards

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Joshua Strickland Date of Image: 12/04/2020 (Police mugshot)

DOVER - An area transient currently incarcerated at the Strafford County House of Corrections has been indicted in a string of cringe-worthy assaults on jail staff.

Joshua Strickland, 36, is accused of four counts of Assault by Prisoner and two counts of Assault by Prisoner: Aggravated Harassment. Each charge carries a maximum prison stay of seven years.

All of the charges stem from an Aug. 26 incident in which, according to the indictments, "she did cause or attempt to cause (two jail employees) to come into contact with blood by expelling such substance indirectly at (the employees) when, with blood in her hair, she shook her head several times sending blood particulates all over (jail staff) after being told multiple times to stop."

Strickland identifies as a woman, Strafford County Jail Supt. Chris Brackett said on Monday.

Strickland is also accused of punching two jail officers in the head, slamming a chair on a guard's head and picking up a chair and ramming it into another guard.

Brackett said the alleged attacks have had a decidedly negative effect on jail personnel.

"Anytime my staff are exposed to something like this I am not happy," he said. "But I believe in the scales of justice - a person is innocent until proved guilty, but there is substantial evidence that Mr. Strickland should be held accountable for his actions."

Strickland is listed as a registered sex offender/predator in Florida, where he was convicted in February 2018 for lewd and lascivious behavior with a victim under 16; and in July 2019 for failing to report. Both cases were adjudicated in Santa Rosa County.

The Florida sex offender registry reports his last known home as being in Portland, Maine, as of Jan. 6 of last year. A registry spokesman said Strickland identified as a man while in the Florida penal system.

Assistant Strafford County Attorney Samantha G. Kotusky, who is listed as prosecutor on the indictments, said Strickland was being held on federal charges and is thought to be possibly awaiting transport by U.S. Marshals.

The December grand jury indictments were handed down on Dec. 16 and released on Monday.

An indictment is not an indication of guilt, rather that enough evidence has been presented to a grand jury to warrant moving forward to trial.

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