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Former Inmates File Suit Against Comanche County Detention Center

COMANCHE CO., Okla_ 7News has learned of shocking allegations against the Comanche County Detention Center.

14 former female inmates have filed a civil lawsuit against the facility. They're accusing the staff and two trusties of rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment. The lawsuit was filed at the federal courthouse in Oklahoma City last Thursday.

Oklahoma City attorneys David Garrett and Derek Franseen represent the women in this case. Garrett said the rapes, sexual assaults and harassment occurred within a two-year period, ending last December. He said the women do not know each other and in fact, came forward at different times.

The complaint said 14 former female inmates of the Comanche County Detention Center allege that employees and trusties would regularly violate them, and the workers wouldn't give them personal necessities or privileges, if they did not bare their breasts. They also allege that the employees and trusties arranged for inmates to be removed from their cells for sexual acts. The women say they notified jail administration, but nothing was done about it.

The attorneys say that detention center officials didn't properly train and supervise employees, and that created an environment that led to rampant sexual and emotional misconduct.

One of the suspects, who worked as a trusty at the time, pleaded no contest to the allegations and received an extended sentence. Comanche County Assistant District Attorney Jerry Cude said his office and the detention center officials were shocked when they found out about the lawsuit. He said they found out  through the media.

Cude said they still have not received any paperwork. Garrett said this is the fourth case in Oklahoma similar to this that his firm has tried. They won a lawsuit in Custer County for $10M, after female inmates came forward about sexual assaults in that county's jail. He said they also won a $13M settlement for a similar case in Delaware County.

He said unfortunately, these types of situations are not uncommon.  

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