User Login    
 + Register
PDQ Cleaning
News : Left Alone With A Sex Offender, A Teacher Is Raped
Posted by Randy on 2014/6/19 4:06:48 (688 reads) News by the same author

PHOENIX (AP) -- A teacher at an Arizona prison was alone in a room full of sex offenders before being stabbed and sexually assaulted by a convicted rapist, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press about an attack that highlighted major security lapses at the facility.
Click to see original Image in a new window

The attack occurred Jan. 30 at the Eyman prison's Meadows Unit, which houses about 1,300 rapists, child molesters and other sex offenders. The teacher was administering a high school equivalency test to about a half-dozen inmates in a classroom with no guard nearby and only a radio to summon help. The Department of Corrections issued only a bare-bones press release after the attack, but the AP pieced together what happened based on interviews and investigatory reports obtained under the Arizona Public Records Act.

After the last of the other inmates left, Jacob Harvey asked the teacher if she could open the bathroom and then attacked her, records show. Harvey is accused of stabbing her in the head with a pen, forcing her to the ground and raping her.

The teacher told investigators that she screamed for help, but none came. Afterward, Harvey tried to use her radio to call for help. It had apparently been changed to a channel the unit's guards didn't use, so Harvey let the woman use a phone, according to the reports.

Carl ToersBijns, a former deputy warden at the prison, said the assault highlights chronic understaffing and lax security policies that put staff members at risk.

"Here you've got a guy that commits a hell of a crime ... and he's put into an environment that actually gives him an opportunity to do his criminality because of a lack of staffing," said ToersBijns, who was deputy warden at the Eyman prison in Florence until retiring in 2010 and oversaw the Meadows Unit for 19 months.

State prison officials, however, dismiss the concerns. They say the assault at the prison about 60 miles southeast of Phoenix is a risk that comes with the job of overseeing violent prison inmates.

Harvey was in the first year of a 30-year sentence for raping a Glendale woman in November 2011. Just 17 at the time, he had knocked on the woman's door in the middle of the day, asked for a drink of water, then forced his way inside, where he repeatedly raped and beat her while her 2-year-old child was in the apartment. He fled naked when the woman's roommate arrived home.

He was arrested after DNA evidence connected him to the crime, and he pleaded guilty.

Harvey was initially classified as a "Class 4" security risk, one notch lower than the highest level. Six months later, despite violating prison rules at least once, he was reclassified at a lower level.

Department of Corrections spokesman Doug Nick said classrooms at prisons across the state are having cameras installed. But he said no administrative investigation was launched because there was no need, and no one was disciplined. He said all prisons are dangerous places and staff are trained accordingly.

"This is an assault that reflects the fact that inmates in our system often act out violently, and it is the inmate suspect who is responsible for this despicable act," he said.

Nick also said that not having a guard in classrooms or nearby "follows accepted corrections practices nationwide."

That's not the case, said Carolyn Eggleston, a professor at California State University, San Bernardino, who started her career as a prison teacher in several states and now is director of the university's Correctional and Alternative Education Program.

"I have to say, I don't find that consistent with standards," Eggleston said. "In a sex offender unit, especially, they should be counting the people leaving the classroom. They just should. And there should be somebody, not in the class ... but there should be somebody in proximity so they can help monitor that."

The woman, who was not critically injured, has filed a worker's compensation claim against the state and did not want to comment on case. The AP does not usually identify sexual assault victims.

Internal emails obtained by the AP show that prisons Director Charles Ryan ordered all non-corrections officer staff at prisons statewide to be issued pepper spray and trained in its use just days after the attack. And an internal memo sent the day after the assault ordered guards at a nearby prison to begin checking on civilian staff every hour.

Nick said the pepper-spray order was in the works before the assault. And he said that, despite the internal memo from a major that ordered hourly checks, the actual practice is unpredictable and more frequent, with staggered checks three times an hour.

ToersBijns, who is an advocate for prison safety and believes understaffing has put state prison staff at risk, said multiple errors likely led to the assault, including not having video cameras in the classroom, a lack of checks on civilian staff and use of an outdated classification system for inmates that led to a violent predator being misidentified as a relatively low-level threat.

After the attack, Harvey was calm when confronted in the classroom, refused to talk to investigators and asked for a lawyer. He was charged last month with sexual assault, kidnapping and assault with a deadly weapon. A public defender was appointed, and he pleaded not guilty at his arraignment. The public defender assigned to his case, Paula Cook, declined to comment.

Harvey was convicted in a prison administrative hearing of sexually assaulting the staff member. Three weeks after the rape, he assaulted another prison employee, although records don't show any details. His security classification was raised two levels, to the highest, nearly three months after the teacher was assaulted.

Printer Friendly Page Send this Story to a Friend Create a PDF from the article


Other articles
2014/10/31 13:20:00 - Milan Coaches Show For Thursday, 10/30/14
2014/10/31 9:42:05 - KC Royals Acquire Minor League Catcher
2014/10/31 7:40:47 - PSC Cold Weather Rule Takes Effect November 1
2014/10/31 7:33:53 - MoDOT To Hold Winter Readiness Drill
2014/10/31 6:31:42 - Trenton Police Department Offers Halloween Safety Tips
2014/10/31 4:35:51 - Halloween Is A Dangerous Night For Impaired Driving
2014/10/31 4:26:18 - Student Threatens To Bring Gun To School; Lack Of Communication Upsets Parents
2014/10/31 4:21:03 - Ameren To Lower Gas Rates For Missouri Customers
2014/10/31 4:12:03 - Elderly Man Shoots Woman Who Kicked In Door
2014/10/31 4:07:35 - Trenton Woman Arrested On Violation Of Probation
2014/10/31 4:05:02 - Unity Road To Be Closed For Railroad Crossing Work
2014/10/30 10:19:14 - 11 Men Sentenced In International Child Porn Ring
2014/10/30 10:07:13 - Plane Crashes Into Building At Airport In Wichita, Kansas
2014/10/30 9:22:06 - Grundy County Circuit Court News
2014/10/30 9:19:12 - Summit Natural Gas To Raise Rates
2014/10/30 9:13:29 - Chillicothe Police Make Additional Arrest In Drug Investigation
2014/10/30 4:40:00 - Mother Upset After School Vaccinates Her Child Without Her Permission
2014/10/30 4:36:29 - Illinois Teacher Calls Jamaican Students "N" Word After They Object To 'Afro-American'
2014/10/30 4:09:13 - Kirksville Teen Arrested For Child Molestation
2014/10/30 4:02:02 - Missouri Inmate Indicted For Killing Cellmate
2014/10/30 3:59:21 - Wentzville Parents Charged In 10-Week-Old's Death
2014/10/29 12:36:00 - "Mr. Mizzou" John Kadlec Passes Away at 86
2014/10/29 12:33:08 - NCMC Announces Cancellation of "Meet the Pirate" Night
2014/10/29 12:28:54 - Pre-Season Parent Meeting Approaches For THS Wrestlers
2014/10/29 12:24:51 - Alex Smith Suffers Shoulder Injury
2014/10/29 12:19:43 - 7th Heaven : Royals Push World Series To Dramatic Final Game
2014/10/29 10:40:56 - Health Fair To Be Held Saturday In Mercer County
2014/10/29 10:38:44 - Solar Farm, Electric Rates Topic Of Trenton Board Of Public Works
2014/10/29 10:36:41 - Program On Ebola To Be Presented Saturday In Chillicothe
2014/10/29 10:34:22 - Chillicothe Police Department Makes Arrests On Drug Charges



Bookmark this article at these sites

                   

Listen to KTTN-FM