Female Inmates Say Guard Sold Keys to Male Inmates

In lawsuits, women allege they were assaulted in Clark County, Indiana
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 28, 2022 6:06 PM CDT
Updated Jul 28, 2022 9:00 PM CDT
Female Inmates Say Guard Sold Keys to Male Inmates

Two federal lawsuits filed by female inmates in Indiana make disturbing claims: They say a guard at the Clark County Jail sold keys to the women's section to two male inmates, which led to a "night of terror" and sexual assaults, reports the Lexington Herald-Leader. So far, a total of 28 women have joined the lawsuits over the alleged abuse on Oct. 23, 2021. “Numerous male detainees used the keys ... to enter Pods 4(E) and 4(F), where they raped, assaulted, harassed, threatened and intimidated the plaintiffs in this lawsuit, and other women, for several hours, resulting in significant physical and emotional injuries,” per the second of the lawsuits, which was filed Friday in the US District Court of the Southern District of Indiana.

The women allege that guard David Lowe sold keys to a pair of male inmates for $1,000 and that those men brought other men into the women's section of the prison. Lowe has since been fired and charged with felony misconduct, and he is scheduled to go on trial in September, per WHAS11. However, Lowe tells the Washington Post that he did not sell the keys but rather made a mistake that led to their theft. He says he was later "coerced" into making a confession. An attorney for the Clark County Sheriff's Office blamed the night on “the unforeseeable criminal actions of a rogue corrections officer” but also disputed some of the women's allegations.

Interviews with female inmates "have yielded information that is in direct opposition to the allegations made,” Wilder wrote to the Post. "The investigation seems to indicate that there was a systematic plan by individuals who were incarcerated that evening to develop the narrative that makes up the crux of the claims in the civil case.” At least two women say they were raped. They name not only Lowe but Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel for failing to protect them. The women say no guards came to their aid even though surveillance cameras captured the intrusion. (Read more female inmates stories.)

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