Unfortunately, unlike a cop, I have to follow all the restrictions. Fact is, off duty I'm in more danger than a cop. A lot more criminals know me by face.
Why would any former jailbird want to harm the guards after they have been released? The only reason I can think of is to get paybacks for abuse.
Or perhaps paybacks for perceived "abuse". Perhaps Billy the ex-con has a grudge against Mr. CO becuase Mr. CO confiscated his Playboys or because Mr. CO is the one that caught him with the weapon that got another few years tacked on to his sentence. What you or I are willing to get violent about and what the average inmate is willing to get violent about are probably very different things. Remember, these are people who have already demonstrated that they have trouble being a productive member of society (hence the high percentage of repeat offenders). What you and I would probably perceive as Mr. CO just doing his job might very well be perceived by Billy the ex-con as having been "wronged". Whether you intended it that way or not, your initial statement did come off as a veiled accusation.
I suspect that you're thinking the same as I do: if I were an ex-con, the last thing I'd want to do is something that will get me sent back to prison. Indeed, this is how most normal people think, but then again most normal people don't get thrown in the slammer to begin with.