Former prison guard jailed for eight years for sexually abusing female inmates

A former prison guard has been sentenced to eight years behind bars for sexually abusing multiple female inmates while working at a California correctional facility.

Andrew Jones, 36, of Clovis, California, participated in a culture of “egregious sexual abuse” that included multiple employees of the jail, including the warden and chaplain.

He pleaded guilty on August 17 to six counts of sexual abuse of a ward involving three inmates and one count of false statements to the Justice Department Office of Inspector General (DOJ-OIG). He was handed his sentence on Thursday.

Following his jail time, Jones will be under supervised release for another 10 years, according to the DOJ.

The crimes were committed at the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) in Dublin, California.

According to the DOJ, Jones was employed as a correctional officer at the jail where he supervised prisoners who worked in the Food Services Department.

He previously admitted that, between July 2020 and June 2021, while he had supervisory and disciplinary authority over all the female prisoners, he received oral sex from, and/or had sexual intercourse with, three female prisoners who worked for him in the FCI Dublin kitchen.

Jones abused the prisoners in multiple places near the FCI Dublin kitchen, including a staff bathroom, a warehouse, and a room where kitchen utensils were kept.

The government argued that Jones “enforced silence and obedience” from the prisoners by using “violence and threats of violence.”

A memorandum filed in connection with Jones’ sentencing, stated that “intimidation and insults on the one hand, and the flattery on the other, was aimed at cultivating pliant prisoners who Jones could abuse for his own sexual pleasure, while he remained safe in the belief that his misconduct would go unreported.”

“The egregious sexual abuse that took place at FCI Dublin was disgraceful and tragic, and the Justice Department will not rest until we have eliminated such misconduct from the Federal Bureau of Prisons,” said Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco.

“As the defendant’s guilty plea and today’s sentencing demonstrate, FBOP employees who abuse their positions of authority and assault those in their custody will be held to account.”

Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz of the DOJ-OIG added: “Jones participated in a culture of sexual abuse of female inmates at FCI Dublin that included the Warden, the Chaplain, and other employees, and he like them has now been held to account for his heinous acts.

“The DOJ Office of the Inspector General will continue to aggressively investigate this type of egregious criminal conduct, and we will do everything within our authority to pursue justice for victims of sexual abuse.”

FBI Deputy Director Paul Abbate described Jones’ conduct as “sick and reprehensible”.

“Today’s sentencing comes amid relentless efforts to prevent abuse and misconduct by corrections personnel entrusted with the care and protection of others,” he said.

Jones is one of eight correctional officers to have been charged with federal crimes involving sexual misconduct at FCI Dublin in the past three years and the fourth to have been sentenced.