FORT LAUDERDALE — A former Broward Sheriff's Office corrections deputy was sentenced Thursday to 30 years in prison for raping a handcuffed prisoner he was moving from one jail to another.
Charles Edward Floyd, 40, wept openly in court as he addressed his wife and then his mother.
"Baby, I'm sorry, I gotta go. Don't cry for me," he sobbed. "Mom, I love you."
His wife, who told the judge Floyd was a good man, ran down the hallway after the sentencing, crying and throwing up.
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In September a jury convicted Floyd of kidnapping and two counts of sexual battery by a person in a position of control or authority.
Before trial, he had turned down a plea offer of five years in prison, to be followed by 20 years of probation. His sentence was for 30 years on each count, to be served concurrently. His family said they will appeal.
The victim testified that on June 13, 2007, she was one of three female inmates the deputy was transporting. Floyd dropped off the other two women and took her to a remote area behind a warehouse, where he told her, "I've been waiting for this all day."
She testified that he forced her to perform oral sex and raped her. Prosecutors said Floyd's DNA was found in the woman's cervix.
Prosecutor Jodi Gress appealed to Judge Joel Lazarus for a tough sentence.
"This defendant was put in a position of authority," she said. "He should be held to a higher standard."
His attorney, Bob Nichols, argued that the "victim did not appear traumatized after the event." He said the judge should "weigh a lifetime of service to the community versus one day."
"Every person is better than the worst day of their life," Nichols said.
Lazarus said he took issue with Nichols' argument that this crime didn't have the level of violence and injury so many other crimes have.
"All sexual batteries are violent," Lazarus said. Even when "a good person commits an evil deed, nonetheless, he commits an evil deed."
Floyd's mother had appealed for a lighter sentence.
"My son has never been in trouble in his life," she said as Floyd wiped tears from his eyes with shackled hands. "I never had problems with him ever, ever. He had a 3.6 grade [point] average, captain of the band."
The Sheriff's Office hired Floyd in November 2002 and fired him on Oct. 29, 2007.
"He's devastated," Nichols said after the sentencing. "He spent his life in service as a deputy without a blemish."
Lisa J. Huriash can be reached at lhuriash@SunSentinel.com or 954-572-2008.