On Monday, a transgender man in Georgia filed a lawsuit against the deputy he alleges sexually assaulted him in jail.
The man, whose name will not be released because he is a victim of a sexual assault, claims that former Deputy Duane Clarke repeatedly assaulted him. According to his lawyer, Jeff Sliz, “[w]hen the guard confronted him, my client said he wasn’t interest in doing what he wanted him to do. He told him that this was his pod and he would do what he told him to do.”
Deputy Clarke was fired, then later arrested following the incident. A Gwinnett County Sheriff’s representative told WSB-TV Atlanta that “[i]mmediately following this inmate’s allegation, Duone Clarke was placed on Administrative Leave. At the conclusion of the subsequent investigation, Duone Clarke was terminated and our agency obtained criminal arrest warrants. I cannot provide further information due to the pending legal action.”
The man’s lawyer contends that the county did not do enough to protect the transgender man. In the lawsuit, he notes that “Gwinnett County, which knew or should have known that transgender inmates are at greater risk of sexual assault by detention officers, was deliberately indifferent to the risk of harm to Plaintiff by not having policies and procedures in place to address that risk other than State Law penal statues.”
Sliz claims that no one monitored the security cameras set up to protect inmates, and that there was not a second corrections officer assigned to the area in which the assaults occurred.
He told WSB-TV Atlanta that “[t]hey had it set up to monitor these people but they just didn’t do it.”
Scott Eric Kaufman is the proprietor of the AV Club's Internet Film School and, in addition to Raw Story, also writes for Lawyers, Guns & Money. He earned a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of California, Irvine in 2008.
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