Monday, May 20, 2024

Female Inmate Allegedly Raped by Transgender Inmate in California Women’s Prison

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A woman at the Central California Facility for Women says she witnessed the immediate aftermath of a jailhouse rape by a transgender inmate.

Mimi Le provided a sworn declaration to lawyers with the Women’s Liberation Front, which will be included in the organization’s case against California, according to evidence from the filing obtained by Reduxx.

Le reportedly said she was one of many inmates who saw events involving what was described as a “sexual assault” committed by a man who identifies as a woman and was therefore locked up in a women’s prison.

On May 19, a female inmate was taken to a medical-administrative building after other female inmates reported to staff that she had been raped, Le explained, adding that she found the woman to be “barely conscious.”

Less than an hour later, the female victim was taken away on a stretcher under a “Code 3” alert, which means a person is unresponsive and unable to be revived via immediate methods, Le added.

Le and other inmates reportedly identified the alleged assailant as Jonathan Robertson, a biologically male transgender individual going by the name Siyaah Skylit.

Multiple inmates said they had heard Robertson shouting, “Fuck all you bitches. I’ll rape you. I’ll rape your mama. I’ll fuck all you bitches up — there is nothing you bitches can do.” He has also spit at fellow inmates, the women said.

“This was very triggering and saddening for everybody,” Le reportedly wrote in her declaration. “To be threatened by a man with doing a thing that he can do, that he is capable of doing, that he may already have done to other women, is terrifying.”

“They were concerned and discussed how to protect themselves; I convinced them to just go to their rooms while I asked for an update from the Captain to figure out how to proceed,” Le added.

Later, Le said she went to correctional staff to inquire about what, if anything, would be done about Robertson’s threatening behavior, at which point she learned he “had already been released back onto the yard.”

But “once the Captain learned of the rape threats, he decided along with the Sergeant to move [him] to administrative segregation,” the inmate said, adding that “before they could do that, the Warden overruled them, saying that an inmate-to-inmate threat is not an offense sufficient.”

Le went on to say that two days later, she and several other inmates were told they had been placed on a “confidential,” referring to a list of inmates who are considered to have their immediate safety under threat.

In her statement, Le said men “get to transfer to women’s prison because the prison fails to keep them safe from rape by other men in men’s prison — but now the prison is protecting [them] by getting [them] out of the men’s prison only to let [them] terrorize women with rape and violence threats.”

Shockingly, Robertson was immediately moved to the California Institution for Women — a lower security women’s correctional facility — just days after he issued rape threats, Reduxx reported.

“We are deeply saddened and disturbed by the reported rape at CCWF and by the reported actions of prison administrators, who have obviously failed in their duties to protect female inmates,” Women’s Liberation Front executive director Mahri Irvine told Reduxx.

“As the months pass by, more and more sexual assaults are being reported in prisons across the country — predatory male inmates are targeting vulnerable women, and women’s fears are disregarded by prison officials,” Irvine added.

Nearly 50 percent of male inmates identifying as female have been convicted of a sexual offense — compared to just 11 percent of biological males who do not identify as female — according to the Bureau of Prisons.

Meanwhile, among the incarcerated men seeking to transfer to women’s prisons in California, 33.8 percent (fully one-third) are registered sex offenders, with the sex offender inmate population being responsible for up to 50 percent of rapes that occur within the prison system, according to the Bureau of Prisons.

“How many more rapes must these women endure before prison administrators and state legislators will be held accountable for their abject failure to protect female inmates from predatory men?” Irvine asked.

Notably, Robertson has enjoyed being the subject of transgender activist campaigns trying to relocate him from a male facility to the women’s institution in which he now resides. In 2021, LGBTQ news site Pink News promulgated a petition demanding that Robertson be freed from prison.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and X at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.

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