Thursday, December 12, 2013

NY - Former inmates sue sheriff, others

To protect and serve?
Original Article


Monroe - A series of lawsuits filed in federal court this week name Monroe County, Sheriff Patrick O’Flynn, and a former jail sergeant.

The plaintiffs are five women who were each victims of sex crimes while they were inmates in the Monroe County Jail.

Former Monroe County Jail Sergeant Robert Wilson pled guilty this year to more than twenty crimes involving seven female victims. The crimes included rape, sexual abuse, and official misconduct and Wilson’s plea deal resulted in a six-month jail sentence, ten years of probation, and registration as a Level 2 sex offender.

The lawsuit against Wilson, Monroe County, and Sheriff O’Flynn details numerous sexual encounters from 2010 to 2012 between Wilson and the five women. Each occurred while inside the women’s jail facility in Brighton.
  • In one case a plaintiff claims Wilson encouraged her “to strip tease in her cell while he watched” and later “directed” her to perform oral sex.
  • In another case a plaintiff claims Wilson called her away from the cell block for “unscheduled medical appointments” and “lead her into an unoccupied office” where he engaged “in personal, flirtatious and sexually explicit conversation.” Plaintiff later claims Wilson directed her to “write sexually explicit letters to him, which she did” and “Wilson wrote a sexually explicit letter” back to her.
  • That same plaintiff also claims Wilson took her to his Spencerport apartment after she was released and “tried to force” her to have sex “but allowed her to give him oral sex instead.” She also claims Wilson “continued to stalk” her in phone calls “proposed sex, including sex for money and sex with other participants.” She claims he “frequented, at an unreasonable rate, the salon where (she) was employed at and demanded that she cut his hair.”
  • Another plaintiff claims Wilson entered her jail cell, sat on her bunk, and “directed her to show him her breasts.”
  • Another plaintiff claims Wilson called her out into a hallway because he had cleaning for her to do but “instead of cleaning” Wilson took her to a private room where he had sex with her.

"These are five women that are at the lowest point in their life,” said attorney Robert King who represents all five victims. “What we know is that this happened time after time after time, woman after woman after woman, inside the jail and in some instances outside the jail after they were released.”

In each of the lawsuits the plaintiffs claim that “other members of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office allowed Sergeant Wilson to be alone with” the women. One plaintiff claims in her lawsuit that the Sheriff’s Office was “alerted to the inappropriate relationship” and “did not investigate.”

If they did investigate, the investigation was not sufficient” and the office “did not take action to remedy the situation and prevent future harm” according to that plaintiff’s lawsuit.

The lawsuits allege violations of the victim’s constitutional rights to due process, liberty, and their rights to be “free from cruel and unusual punishment.” Allegations of “inadequate training and supervision” were also made against Sheriff Patrick O’Flynn and Monroe County.

Efforts by 13WHAM News to contact Wilson were unsuccessful. The lawyer who represented him on the criminal case was reluctant to comment since he had not been retained for this civil action.

A spokesman for Monroe County Sheriff Patrick O’Flynn told 13WHAM News that the office does not comment on pending litigation. A spokesman for Monroe County also did not provide comment.

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