Immigration and Customs Enforcement released a statement yesterday that it is investigating Corrections Corporation of America for repeated incidents of sexual assault against female detainees at the company's T. Don Hutto detention center. According to the AP story ("ICE investigating alleged sex assault of detainees," May 28) by Suzanne Gamboa,
Immigration and Customs Enforcement is investigating allegations that a guard at a central Texas detention facility sexually assaulted female detainees on their way to being deported.
Agency spokesman Brian Hale said Friday the guard has been fired and Corrections Corporation of America, which manages the prison, is on probation pending the investigation's outcome.
Several women who were held at T. Don Hutto detention facility in Taylor, Texas, were groped while being patted down and at least one was propositioned for sex, ICE said.
"We understand that this employee was able to commit these alleged crimes because ICE-mandated transport policies and procedures were not followed," David Sanders, the Homeland Security Department's contracting officer said in a letter to Corrections Corporation of America obtained by The Associated Press.
ICE has ordered Corrections Corporation of America to make changes, including not allowing male guards to be alone with female detainees.
There are many questions still to be answered about this deeply troubling incident. As readers of the blog will remember, Hutto was the site of another sexual misconduct case in 2007. We will be following up on this story with much more over the next few days.