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MO Must Pay $2M For Sexual Harassment Of Prison Nurse

The Missouri Department of Corrections must pay $2 million in punitive damages in a sexual harassment case brought by a prison nurse who felt trapped between two corrections officers as one described plans to kidnap, drug and rape her, reports News From The States. Cole County Circuit Judge Jon Beetem confirmed a jury award for “a hostile work environment” to Kathleen Newman, who sued the department, three corrections officers, prison health contractor Corizon LLC and two of its employees. After a nine-day trial, the jury awarded Newman $150,000 in compensatory damages and $2 million in punitive damages.


Newman began working for Corizon in 2014. The lawsuit focused on a Jan. 20, 2017, incident in the prison infirmary of the Jefferson City Correctional Center. Corrections officer Michael Redmon, who had unsuccessfully sought dates with Newman, talked with with Sgt. James McKee about working on a “capture room” at his house where he would hold Newman after kidnapping her, then using drugs to subdue and rape her. Newman said Redmon told her “he knew where she lived and how easy it is to find out where someone lives.” The suit accused McKee of blocking the exit from the infirmary, laughing and encouraging Redmon. Newman was subjected to further harassment, including“daily ‘rape jokes’ from other corrections officers and retaliation by the warden and other jail personnel.” Newman resigned in April 2017. Redmon was allowed to return to work after a perfunctory investigation and was only fired months after Newman resigned.

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