Court Doesn’t Punish Prison Guard for Questionable Tactics
Article from Reason by Billy Binion.
In 2011, 200 women serving sentences at the Lincoln Correctional Center in Lincoln, Illinois, woke one morning to a tactical team in riot gear, who rounded them up, handcuffed them, and herded them to the gymnasium. Eventually, the women were taken in groups of four to 10 to the adjoining beauty shop and bathroom, where they were told to take everything off—for what, they weren’t sure. That included menstrual products, so some women began to bleed onto the floor.
One by one, prisoners were forced to turn around, bend over, and spread their anal and vaginal cavities for inspection. The reason? A non-required training exercise for cadets.
“Dirty bitches,” said a correctional officer. Prisoners listened to a chorus of guards and cadets who called them “fucking disgusting,” told them they smelled “like death,” and taunted them with reminders that they “deserve[d] to be in here.” The bathroom’s door was kept open and the beauty shop’s walls were lined with mirrors, so male officers watched from the gym.
A federal court decided in July that the incident did not violate the Fourth Amendment, which protects against unreasonable searches and seizures. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit ruled 2-1 that, because the women did the touching themselves, their right to privacy was not violated.
Read the entire article at Reason.
Image Credit: By St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
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