Friday, February 10, 2012

"Raped, Stalked, Threatened, and Terrorized"

Those are the words used by an attorney representing one of a few women who were traumatized by their experience at a CCA prison to describe how an officer at the Camino Nuevo facility in New Mexico.  After being transferred, her client found the new facility completely unprepared to house prisoners; there were no programs, no guidelines for prisoners, and only a very short briefing before the women were locked down.  The lack of oversight allowed a guard, Anthony Townes, to rape 4 women in his tenure at the facility.  The abuse the women suffered caused them to fear retaliation so desperately that they did not speak out about the sexual assaults they endured for years.

Unfortunately, New Mexico houses more of its prisoners in private facilities than pretty much every other state, based on percentage of its population.  So there are thousands of other potential victims across the state.  But thankfully there are still some sane officials in the state; the County Manager for Eddy County, Allen Sartin, is one of them.  He refuses to permit a private company to operate the local detention center, despite the difficulty the county has encountered in trying to recruit corrections officers.  Having previous experience in a county that did contract out services to a private company, he recognizes that using private prisons "opens the door for more lawsuits."


  1. There were allegations of rape at the Hernando County Jail, too, which was operated by CCA for 22 years. The allegations weren't against staff members, though -- they were against a member of the medical staff, a psychologist, I believe.

    But any way you slice it, it should never happen. These people are not just sick, but they get to feed their illnesses at the expense of inmates who have no recourse. DISGUSTING.

  2. Whats next....FEMA Detention camps?

  3. Hernando County jail denied Carlos Valentin my son medical treatment for weeks and when I finally got him out he died a few days after. He begged to get treated for his chronic vomiting and his pain. He died 2 days ago and he is being denied an autopsy.

    1. I'm terribly sorry for your loss. It is absolutely inexcusable and reprehensible for an agency, private or public, to neglect anyone's medical treatment, especially if that results in harm or death. Have you heard any further news on the autopsy?