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Central Texas Detention Facility

Former GEO guard given jail time over sexual abuse

A former GEO Group prison guard has been given jail time after sexually abusing a prisoner, reports KSAT 12 out of San Antonio.

 Barbara Jean Goodwin was sentenced to five months in jail, followed by five months of home confinement. She will also serve a two-year supervised-release, and must register as a sex offender. She could have served up to 15 years in jail.

 Goodwin pleaded guilty in March, where testimony from her victim and other inmates said she forcibly performed oral sex on a prisoner over 30 times during a six month period.

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Guard at San Antonio detention center admits to sexually assaulting inmate

A guard from a private prison in San Antonio pled guilty to sexually abusing a prisoner, reports the San Antonio Current.

Barbara Jean Goodwin was a guard at the Central Texas Detention Facility, a private prison for immigrants in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody. The detention center is operated by for-profit company GEO Group. Testimony from her victim and other detainees stated she forcibly performed oral sex on a prisoner over 30 times over a six month period. Goodwin now faces up to 15 years in federal prison.

GEO Group, the company that operates the Central Texas Detention Facility, is one of the largest for-profit prison companies in the U.S. It operates multiple facilities in Texas, with a history of abuse and prison riots due to deaths of prisoners. It is also not the first time that GEO employees have been charged with crimes. GEO employees have been arrested for burglary and smuggling in contraband.

 

2 private prison guards indicted in Texas

Two ex-guards at a private immigrant detention facility were indicted today in San Antonio, reports KVIA ABC-7.

A federal grand jury indicted Barbara Jean Goodwin, accusing her of having sex with a detainee between February and August of 2016. If found guilty, she faces up to 15 years in prison. The grand jury also accused Ray Alexander Barr of providing methamphetamine and alcohol to prisoners on December 27. If found guilty, he could get up to 20 years in prison.

Both Goodwin and Barr were guards at the Central Texas Detention Facility, located in San Antonio. The facility is run by the GEO Group, which is a private company that operates immigrant detention facilities for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

This is not the first controversy that has struck the Central Texas Detention Facility. In 2010 a prisoner was found unresponsive in his cell, and an apparent drug overdose was the cause of death. The incident led to the GEO Group being the subject of a lawsuit alleging that a guard had smuggled in heroin that led to the overdose.  

KSAT reports: "Privately run prisons profit from detainees"

San Antonio's KSAT reported on the prevalence of private prisons in Texas, particularly in South Texas ("Privately rin prisons profit from detainees," 5/1/14). 

According to the report, over 12,000 people will spend the night in cells at private prisons. There are at least 50 private prisons all over Texas, which incarcerate people for profit. This business model has grown into a $1 billion industry. 

"In south Texas you see one of the greatest concentrations of for-profit prisons of anywhere in the country," according to Grassroots Leadership's Bob Libal.  He continued, "For private prison corporations, every person that's in prison is a dollar sign. Rehabilitation is bad for business; a shrinking prison population hurts the bottom line." 

In 2012, humanrightsfirst.org published a study which indicated that the average per diem cost for one incarcerated person is $164, or $5,000 per month. The company that has the most stake in the private prison industry on the local level is the GEO Group. GEO was initially silent when KSAT contacted them for comment, but the company has since responded

GEO operates many of the large prisons and detention centers in South Texas, including the Central Texas Detention Facility in San Antonio with 688 beds, as well as the South Texas Detention Facility in Pearsall with 1,904 beds. Pearsall is estimated to make $9 million per month, or $114 million per year. 

Christy, a former GEO employee who worked at Pearsall for two years, is critical of GEO: "It’s all about the money. It not only puts their life at stake, the detainees, but it puts our life at stake too." Christy still has her GEO uniform and ID. She was allegedly fired for being a "bad officer" only after she filed a sexual harassment claim against another officer. She has also allegedly observed the company's habit of cutting corners on equipment, lack of staff, and lack of reports filed regarding violence among incarcerated persons at the facility.

 "GEO would be a good company if they would follow their policies and their regulations," Christy said. 

Christy was unwilling to speak on camera because she fears the GEO Group. 

 

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