Denver women’s prison has highest rate of staff sex assaults in nation, report finds

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DENVER — A national study of reported sexual assaults at prisons across the country found the Denver Women’s Correctional Facility has the highest rate of assaults in the country.

The study found 10.7 percent of the 160 inmates at the facility were abused by staff. By comparison, the national rate was just 2.4 percent.

The U.S. Department of Justice released the report, called “Sexual Victimization in Prisons and Jails Reported by Inmates 2011-12,” Thursday.

The Denver prison was identified among 12 others across the country for high rates of staff sexual misconduct.

Nationally the study looked at 38,351 male and female inmates at 225 prisons and 358 jails. The accuracy of the inmate reporting is believed to be above 95 percent.

At the Denver prison, 7.3 percent of inmates reported that physical coercion or threat of physical force was part of the assault, the report said.

Two other Colorado state-run prisons were also included in the report. They are the Buena Vista Correctional Center and Skyline Correctional Center.

Only 1.2 percent of male inmates reporting being sexually victimized at Buena Vista. At Skyline, 2.4 percent of inmates reported abuse.

The study also looked at county jails. Denver County jail had the highest rate of abuse reported at 3.7 percent. By comparison, no inmates at Jefferson or Park counties jails reported sexual assaults, the study found.

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