A California State Prison-Sacramento (CSP-SAC) correctional officer is recovering from injuries suffered during an unprovoked attack by an inmate Saturday night.

The assault occurred on Nov. 23 at approximately 5:30 p.m. while staff attempted to conduct a random search of inmate Delvin E. Cottingham’s assigned cell.

Inmate Cottingham exited his cell and unexpectedly walked toward the officer and punched the officer in his face, knocking him to the ground.

Inmate Cottingham then straddled the officer’s chest and repeatedly struck the officer in his face with his fists.  A second officer came to the aid of the first officer and fended off the inmate’s attack.

The officer was taken to a local hospital for treatment.
The officer, a nearly eight-year CDCR veteran, suffered a left orbital fracture, a bi-lateral fracture to both sides of his nasal cavity, and abrasions to his forehead, nose, cheeks and eyes. The abrasions to the officer’s face required nine sutures.

He is currently at home recovering.

Inmate Cottingham, 39, was received from San Diego County on August 4, 1997, with a 42-years-to-life sentence for first-degree murder, battery with serious bodily injury, second-degree robbery, and an ex-felon in possession of a firearm.

Inmate Cottingham was transferred to the Administrative Segregation Unit at CSP-SAC pending investigation.

The incident is being investigated by the prison’s Investigative Services Unit and will be referred to the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office.