US

Judge Sentences Former Prison Transport Guard Who Admitted To Sexually Assaulting Multiple Female Defendants

(Screenshot/YouTube/The Justice Department)

Mariane Angela Entertainment And News Reporter
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A Minnesota former prison transport officer received a 30-year sentence Tuesday after sexually assaulting several female defendants.

Marquet Johnson, 45, has been sentenced to 30 years in prison following multiple incidents where he sexually assaulted female pretrial detainees under his supervision, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ). The sentence also includes five years of supervised release, and Johnson must register as a sex offender in compliance with the Federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act.

Johnson’s tenure at Inmate Services Corporation (ISC) was marked by a series of abuses, DOJ said in the press release. He repeatedly exploited his position to coerce and assault detainees. In one incident in Nov. 2019, he isolated a female detainee during a transport stop in New Mexico and assaulted her at gunpoint. In the same year, he forced another detainee to perform oral sex on him at ISC headquarters and assaulted another in a Missouri hotel.

Johnson committed these crimes during prisoner transports, services provided by private firms hired by various law enforcement agencies to handle detainees with out-of-state warrants, the press release stated. Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke pointed out the sentencing’s broader implications. (RELATED: Woman Sues After Transgender Inmate Allegedly Sexually Assaulted Her In Prison)

“This sentence shines a light on the private prisoner transport industry that countless law enforcement agencies across this country rely on to transport people who are arrested on warrants outside their jurisdiction,” Clarke said. “These private companies often operate in the shadows of our criminal justice system where some officers have seized the opportunity to physically and sexually abuse vulnerable victims in their custody. This sentence highlights the abuses of this industry, the bravery of the victims who came forward to report that abuse and our commitment to seeing justice done for these victims.”

U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez also pointed out the duty of law enforcement to uphold the dignity of all individuals, including suspects. “As law enforcement officers, we are charged not only with protecting the public from harm but also with protecting the rights of suspects. If you abuse your position of authority to sexually assault those entrusted to your care, your badge will not shield you from justice,” Uballez said.