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Buildings of the jail at Rikers Island. (REUTERS/Chip East)

Prison abuse

Female inmate says prison guard raped her while another guard watched

By WITW Staff on November 23, 2015

A corrections officer at New York City’s Rikers Island jail has been accused of raping a female inmate on a bus while another officer allegedly watched without intervening, according to a federal lawsuit. The plaintiff is only identified as Jane Doe in order to protect her identity as a potential rape victim, but two officers are identified in the suit as Figueroa and Pearson. According to the allegations, the woman was waiting on a transport bus with male inmates, one of whom bribed the officers to allow him and the female inmate to have sex. But Figueroa, the guard, soon came onto the bus, told the male inmate to leave, and then proceeded to rape the woman, despite her protesting and asking him to use a condom. He said he “wanted to give Pearson a show,” according to the document.

“[The woman] considered screaming out but chose not to scream because she realized that any officers who might respond from the [prison] were apt to be male and [she] was frightened that they might assault her as well,” the lawsuit said, according to The New York Post.

The U.S. Justice Department has said it will review the claims. As RT reported, the incident comes on the heels of a public advocate’s report concluding that most claims of sex abuse in prison don’t make it to the police. Out of 116 complaints of abuse, only two incidents were reported to police, while none of the accusations of rape were reported.

Read more at The New York Post and RT.