Gov. Steve Beshear on Friday ordered some 400 female inmates removed from a privately run prison after widespread allegations of sexual misconduct involving the predominantly male corps of corrections officers.
Beshear ordered the women moved from Otter Creek Correctional Complex, operated by Nashville-based Corrections Corp. of America, to the state-run Western Kentucky Correctional Complex starting by July 1.
The move came four months after the Kentucky Department of Corrections called for security improvements at Otter Creek in a report on the handling of 18 alleged cases of sexual misconduct by prison guards there.
"There is no place for this kind of behavior in our system," Beshear said Friday.
Under Beshear's order, the male inmates now held the Western Kentucky Correctional Complex in Lyon County will be moved to Otter Creek and other facilities around the state.
State investigators had made a series of demands to protect women inmates at Otter Creek, including basic strategies like assigning female guards to supervise sleeping quarters, hiring a female security chief, and shuffling staffing so that at least 40 percent of the work force is female.
Beshear said finding enough women willing to work as corrections officers at Otter Creek had been difficult.