Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Female inmates file lawsuit claiming sex abuse by guards - The Denver Post

Female inmates file lawsuit claiming sex abuse by guards - The Denver Post

The state's Department of Corrections harbors an "overt culture of sexual abuse" by prison guards, and department leaders have done little to stop it, according to a lawsuit pending in federal court.

Ten female Colorado prison inmates sued the department last month, claiming repeated acts of sex abuse by male corrections officers.

The complaint details more than a dozen instances in which it claims officers in two prisons — the Denver Women's Correctional Facility and the since-closed, privately run Brush Correctional Facility — coerced women into performing sex acts on them.

The officers made threats to have the women "written up" or to make life difficult if the women did not submit, according to the lawsuit.

Meanwhile, Department of Corrections officials failed to take "substantive remedial actions" to stop it, the lawsuit charges.

The department and the company that ran the Brush facility, GRW Corp., continued to employ officers suspected of abuse and failed to improve surveillance systems to reduce blind spots where abuse could occur, the suit says.

"This conduct amounts to deliberate indifference to the rights of inmates," the lawsuit claims. ". . . The conduct is so grossly reckless that future misconduct was and is virtually inevitable."

The inmates, who are represented by the Denver law firm Irwin and Boesen, are seeking to have the case certified for class-action status.

Katherine Sanguinetti, a Corrections Department spokeswoman, said the department will not comment on ongoing litigation.

Read more: Female inmates file lawsuit claiming sex abuse by guards - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_17314361#ixzz1DH8i30UO
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