DepCor officer being investigated for alleged lewd acts
by Nick Delgado
Guam - The Department of Corrections has launched an internal affairs investigation after a complaint was filed against a veteran officer. Allegations that accuse the corrections officer of having detainees perform a lewd act during strip searches at the Agana Lockup.
Several detainees have come forward alleging "that an officer acted inappropriately while doing his job, as a result the director has ordered internal affairs to look into the matter."
KUAM News confirms one of the complaints alleges an officer, while conducting a strip search made inappropriate remarks to two detainees who were then allegedly forced to touch each other when their clothes were off. DepCor spokesperson Lt. Antone Aguon says the alleged incident occurred at the Haganta Detention Facility and that the officer in question has been temporarily reassigned as part of standard procedures until the investigation is completed.
The officer who has 15 years under his belt with the department is now at the Mangilao Compound. "The officers know that there conduct when dealing with the detainees they have to be professional, watch what they say or how they do their job, but again sometimes too we've had cases in the past where detainees have accused officers of doing something only to get him reassigned because they didn't get along with that particular officer," he said.
Lt. Aguon adds the strip search incident isn't the only IA complaint filed against the same officer, as other detainees have come forward making similar accusations. The DepCor spokesperson says all the allegations are serious and will be investigated thoroughly, saying, "The warden and director don't tolerate those kind of behavior and actions and if it is being done then the director has himself warned the staff members in his briefings that if they are caught violating the department rules and regulations he will take appropriate action."
KUAM News also confirmed at least two of the detainees involved are separately facing criminal sexual conduct and burglary charges.
DepCor also confirms another complaint was filed with IA last week by Warden Frank Crisostomo alleging a corrections supervisor would run errands while on the clock. The complaint alleges inappropriate conduct on the part of the supervisor, but DepCor has not released any details about that ongoing investigation. The department has recorded 51 complaints to its internal affairs division this year alone. The complaints range from corrections officers either being absent, late, sleeping on duty or insubordination.