Sexual Abuse and Power Misuse: California’s Federal Prison Under Scrutiny


A former correctional guard at a federal California women’s prison who has faced several misconduct charges was sentenced to six years in prison for sexually abusing five inmates, federal officials revealed Wednesday.

Nakie Nunley, who supervised inmates at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, is the eighth correctional officer to be sentenced to jail for sexually abusing detainees, according to the US Department of Justice. A 2022 investigation by The Associated Press discovered a culture of widespread sexual abuse and cover-up at the jail.

According to U.S. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, Nunley “egregiously exploited” his power to abuse detainees and punish any who spoke up.

“As today’s sentence shows, the Justice Department will hold accountable officials who abuse their authority to harm those they are sworn to protect — and will not tolerate retaliation against victims,” added Monaco.

Nunley pleaded guilty last year to four counts of sexual assault against a ward and five lesser felonies of abusive sexual contact with five women. He also admitted to lying to federal investigators looking into claims against him, according to the US Department of Justice.

The jail is around 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of San Francisco and contains about 600 convicts, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

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