Monday, July 9, 2007

Pregnant Inmates Name Guards as Dads

In many cases, the men were transferred to other prisons rather than fired, prosecuted.

Machelle Pearson, Brenda Clark and T'Nasa Harris were troubled young women who knew prisons could be dangerous places. They never expected the danger would come from the men hired to guard and protect them.

The three women share a uniquely tragic experience. They gave birth in prison to children fathered by guards assigned to look after them. Clark and Harris are now free. Pearson, entering her 21st year of a life sentence, may never be freed.

Harris was 29 and less than a month from her release in 2000 when guard Edmond Hook, her supervisor on a work detail, sexually assaulted her at a boot camp in Pinckney. Fearing Hook could cause trouble for her and her family, she initially denied the attack when questioned by Department of Corrections Internal Affairs investigators and the Michigan State Police.
She later said Hook and a female corporal threatened retaliation if she reported him.
Pearson and Clark also initially refused to report the guards. But unlike Harris, they were involved in longer-term relationships with the guards who fathered their children, prison officials said.

Even though sex between inmates and guards is illegal, Michigan Corrections officials have characterized this kind of sexual misconduct as "consensual" or "romantic" relationships. In several cases examined by The Detroit News, guards in these kinds of relationships were transferred to other facilities rather than fired and prosecuted.

Prison experts and psychologists insist that because guards wield such power over the daily lives of inmates, the women can hardly be seen as willing participants.
"In my opinion, there can be no consensual sex in prison between staff and inmates," said Kay Monaco, a U.S. Justice Department expert who investigated Michigan's women prisons in 1998 and concluded there was widespread sexual misconduct between guards and inmates.
In an environment where sex is sometimes traded for items as inconsequential as a stick of gum, younger inmates are particularly vulnerable.

Pearson was 17 years old when she entered prison in 1984. In 1995, suffering from a neuromuscular disease, she was taken to the University of Michigan Hospital for treatment. However, instead of assigning a female guard, prison officials gave the duty to Corrections officer Thomas Robinson.

Pearson said she was getting out of the shower at the hospital one day when Robinson came into the bathroom and forced her into having sex. Pearson reported the incident only after she was six weeks pregnant.

Prison officials said correspondence found during the investigation showed a prior relationship between Pearson and Robinson. Pearson denied any relationship with him. Robinson was charged and convicted of criminal sexual conduct and fired from the department.
Pearson collected a $15,000 settlement from the state. A federal judge granted her a default judgment of $500,000 in a civil suit she brought against Robinson on behalf of her son, Michael.
Clark was 29 in 1993 when prison doctors discovered she was six weeks pregnant. After first refusing to give the father's name, she relented and named guard Wess Bonney.
The guard was charged with fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct in 1994. Clark refused to testify at the trial, and the case was dismissed.

But after the child was born and DNA tests confirmed Bonney was the father, prosecutors recharged him. The trial ended in a hung jury, but he was fired. State authorities terminated Pearson and Clark's parental rights, and their children are being raised by relatives.
Harris, who has six children, was paroled in December 2002.


The Department of Justice found that women were over represented among low level drug offenders who were non-violent, had minimal or no prior criminal history, and were not principal figures in criminal organizations or activities, but nevertheless received sentences similar to “high level” drug offenders under the mandatory sentencing policies. From 1986 to 1996 the number of women sentenced to state prison for drug crimes increased ten-fold. Nationally one in three women in prison and one in four women in jail are incarcerated for violating a drug law.


Reports Finds Few Protections for Women Prisoners

Prison guards regularly order the shackling of pregnant inmates - even while the woman is giving birth (sic) , according to a recent released report on state and federal corrections policies governing women inmates.


Call me naive, but I thought being a mother and being jailed for victimless crime was bad enough, reading some of the Emails I have received , it turns out that the horror doesn't stop there , once the women are in jail they become sexual entertainment for the guards, who more often than not don't use protection and leave the women pregnant. The guards are then transferred to another prison and the women are left with no one to claim the kid or look out for them.

We allow elders to be victimized, traumatized, their life savings is re distributed to younger recipients and the elder is sent off to a nursing home to be paid by Medicaid... a lot of operators are savvy and know about the look back rule and transfer all the elder's assets three years prior .

When the elder cry for our protection we call it a family matter and' look the other way'.

Oh America! What Have we become. Our Leaders Have lost Their Conscience!

And Our Public officials are Out of Control !

No comments: