Inmate Sexual Abuse Lawyer Minnesota
Inmate sexual abuse is one fundamental problem in correctional facilities across the U.S. Jail or prison sexual abuse and neglect by a corrections officer or another inmate is against constitutional rights.
It is not uncommon to hear stories of inmates being abused by another inmate or prison staff. But because of the nature of the abuse, the environment, and circumstances, most victims feel intimidated to report or even seek help from outside the prison. In fact, Sexual assault in prisons is the most unreported crime in the United States, with 65% of the victims remaining quiet.
Also, according to research, those most vulnerable and who are more likely to be assaulted include women, LGBTQ+, white inmates, physically challenged, and juvenile offenders.
Whether committed by staff or by fellow inmates, sexual assault behind bars is a form of torture that violates international human rights law, the U.S. Constitution, and the Minnesota Statutes.
Sexual Abuse Definitions
The U.S Department of Justice and the National Institute of Corrections define sexual abuse as:
- Offender on Offender Non-Consensual Sexual Acts: Contact of any person without their consent or of a person who is unable to consent or refuse.
- Contact between private parts, including penetration (however slightly).
- Contact between the mouth and private parts.
- Penetration of the private parts by hand, finger, or another object.
- Offender on Offender Abusive Sexual Contacts: Contact of any person without their consent or of a person who is unable to consent or refuse.
- Intentional touching, either directly or through the clothing, of any private parts.
- Staff Sexual Misconduct: includes behaviors or acts of a sexual nature directed toward an offender by an employee, volunteer, contractor, official visitor, or another agency representative, excluding an offender’s family, friends, or visitors. Sexual relationships of a romantic nature between an offender and a staff are included in this definition.
Sexual Abuse by Jail/Prison Staff and Correctional Officers
Sexual violence is often recognized as a crime of power. In the prison environment, inmates are often impotent over almost everything in their lives and can be more vulnerable to suffer from intimidation from staff and correctional officers.
Staff can generally conceal their sexual abuse because they are familiar with the prison and its operations, control the prison environment and arrange discreet encounters with inmates.
Also, the staff knows that inmates are reluctant to report sexual abuse and that if they decide to do so, they are unlikely to be believed because they are convicted criminals.
Sexual Abuse by Other Inmates
Sexual harassment is frequently a form of control in correctional facilities. Usually, new inmates may be naive and accept offers for protection or commissary items, such as candy or cigarettes, to not be abused and violated by others.
Sexual abuse and harassment inside prison and jail are failures of protection, where the jail or prison staff fail to protect inmates from sexual abuse by other inmates.
When any staff member or correctional officer fails to protect an inmate with knowledge of the possible risk of abuse inside the institution by not taking the proper measures to investigate and check, it is deemed a failure to protect an inmate neglecting to provide an essential, safe environment, violating the 8th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and prisoner’s right.
Jail/Prison Sexual Abuse Claims
Sexual crimes in prison and jail are not easy to prove as most of the time. Inmates feel scared, isolated, and intimidated to come forward to report abusive behavior or sexual misconduct by another inmate or by the staff and correctional officers.
Having professional legal assistance to help you in your case is crucial to guarantee your rights, safety, and wellbeing while in jail. Staff is responsible for recognizing and responding to sexual abuse allegations and protecting those in their care.
If you or a loved one is a victim of a sexual crime while in prison or jail, do not wait any longer and let others help you. Find an attorney today to protect your constitutional rights.
You Legal Defense
If you or your loved one has been suffering from sexual abuse and harassment while in jail or prison, contact the Law Zorislav R. Leyderman for a free consultation.
As a civil rights lawyer, Zorislav R. Leyderman has dedicated himself to protecting people who have suffered harassment, discrimination, and misconduct in their lives. Call 612-876-6626 today or email zrl@ZRLlaw.com for more information.