Unsettling events were reportedly happening within the walls of the Cumberland County Jail from 2015 to 2016.

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NJ.com reports that a woman (a former prisoner) filed a lawsuit against the jail claiming that she was sexually assaulted and coerced multiple times by more than one jail guard for over a year. The woman, a former drug addict, had apparently been incarcerated more than once, and some officers would even meet up with her to engage in sexual activity for payment while she wasn't behind bars. While she was in, however, she was alone with many guards on a daily basis since she was assigned duties that removed her from the general population for a decent period of time each day.

As if the circumstances don't sound horrific enough, the coercion came into play when the guards would use the fact that her son was also incarcerated. That would result in even more abuse. The lawsuit wasn't filed too long after the woman was released from jail. The events took place from 2015 to 2016 and the suit was filed in 2017. The lawsuit took three years to settle as it was finally resolved in October. The woman identified as Jennifer Cantoni is set to receive $150,000 from the appropriate parties to close the matter.

Abuse of women behind bars is hardly an unusual occurrence.  In fact, many sources report that 70% of the US's prison guards are male and unfortunately, many take advantage of their position. The stats regarding female prisoners who report sexual abuse from guards is staggering, even more so in the case of juvenile female inmates.

NJ.com says no comment has been made from Cumberland County regarding this matter.

Sources: NJ.com, PrisonPolicy.org

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