(CN) – A 19-year-old woman claims a Tulsa County jailer raped her repeatedly in the jail when she was 17, and that the sheriff did nothing to stop it.
The woman sued Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz and her alleged rapist, Seth Bowers, in Tulsa Federal Court.
The woman, L.P. says she was jailed at the David L. Moss Criminal Justice Center from January to April 2010, when she was 17.
“Over the course of plaintiff’s incarceration at the Tulsa County Jail, she was repeatedly sexually assaulted and raped by a male D.O. [detention officer], defendant Seth Bowers (‘Bowers’),” the complaint states. “As a D.O., it was Bowers’ duty to protect plaintiff from harm. However, rather than protect her, Bowers preyed on her. Knowing the blind spots within the Tulsa County haul where his actions would be unmonitored and knowing of the persistent inadequate staffing, Bowers had total control over female juvenile inmates like plaintiff. In an utter betrayal of public trust and duty, Bowers exploited his position of power to rape and sexually assault a defenseless minor female.
“The rapes and sexual assault upon plaintiff were eminently preventable. These heinous crimes were the foreseeable result of defendant Sheriff Stanley Glanz’s policies, practices and/or customs of inadequate housing, supervision and security. In sum, defendants’ deliberate indifference toward plaintiff’s health and safety was a direct and proximate cause of her injuries and damages.”
She claims: “For the length of plaintiff’s detention, in accordance with the jail’s policy and practice, she was housed in the medical unit of the Tulsa County Jail. In so housing plaintiff, defendants disregarded the known and obvious risk that harm could result to plaintiff if left alone with male detention officers.”
L.P. says the medical unit was overcrowded, a frequent site of violence, and completely unmonitored by video surveillance.
As a result, she says, the medical unit, particularly its north wing, was a blind spot where illegal activity could take place without detection.
She claims that Bowers made a habit of being near the women’s shower while she used it, and would lift the paper placed over the observation window to watch her.
She claims that after she complained to the sheriff that Bowers had raped her, “Sheriff Glanz did not discipline Bowers or turn the complaint over to the district attorney. This is consistent with Glanz’ past conduct and practice when faced with similar allegations of D.O. sexual misconduct with inmates.”
She seeks punitive damages for cruel and unusual punishment and other constitutional violations.
She is represented by Louis Bullock with Bullock Bullock & Blakemore, of Tulsa.