A Hennepin County corrections officer is under investigation after a female inmate at the Plymouth detention facility where the guard works called into a radio program over the weekend to accuse the guard of sexually assaulting her.
A spokeswoman for the county said Tuesday that she could only confirm that there was an open investigation into an unspecified incident involving the officer, whose identity has not been released.
The officer at the Hennepin County workhouse in Plymouth, also referred to as the county’s Adult Corrections Facility, has not been placed on leave, officials said.
“That individual is still working and the allegations are under investigation,” said Catherine Johnson, director of Hennepin County Department of Community Corrections and Rehabilitation.
She said the confines of the investigation prevented her from saying more about what happened.
The 49-year-old inmate was booked into the facility on Jan. 11 after being convicted of receiving stolen property, a gross misdemeanor, according to online county records. Her projected release date is July 26.
The Star Tribune generally does not publish the names of sex crime victims.
The matter first came to light on Sunday afternoon when the woman called into a popular jazz program on KMOJ radio to describe the alleged sexual abuse, according to her pastor, Bishop Richard Howell.
On the three-way phone call, she asked the program to contact Howell on her behalf. When the startled radio host asked her reason for calling, she began detailing the abuse at the facility, which she said left bruises.
“She said that she was being sexually violated by a corrections person,” said local activist Ron Edwards, who has spoken with authorities on her behalf.
Howell, of Shiloh Temple International Ministries, a prominent North Side church, said the woman told him that the assault happened when she was first admitted into the workhouse, as she was being patted down.
Howell said he has been assured that she is safe.
Libor Jany • 612-673-4064 Twitter: @StribJany