DOJ Probe Finds Sexual Misconduct at Ala. Prison - WVTM-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Birmingham, AL

DOJ Probe Finds Sexual Misconduct at Ala. Prison

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. -

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and state Department of Corrections officials say they're working to improve conditions at Julie Tutwiler Prison after a federal investigation found evidence of inmates being sexually abused by staff and fellow prisoners.

A report from the U.S. Department of Justice said instances of sexual abuse at the hands of prison staff and others have been grossly underreported for nearly 20 years.

Federal officials visited the prison last April and recently sent their findings to Bentley in a 36-page letter, saying prisoners there fear for their safety. The DOJ says it will expand its probe to medical and mental health care for inmates as well.

Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas called the findings off-base and says officials have been working to address problems at the facility for months.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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