Thursday, June 11, 2009
Hermaphrodites In Jail
TROY, Va. (AP) - Virginia's largest women's prison rounded up inmates who had loose-fitting clothes, short hair or otherwise masculine looks and placed them in a separate cell block.
That's according to prisoners and corrections officers who talked to The Associated Press about the practice.
They say dozens were moved in an attempt to split up relationships and curb illegal sexual activity at the 1,200-inmate Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women in Troy. Some straight women were sent to the wing strictly because of their appearance.
Civil rights advocates called the moves unconstitutional punishment for "looking gay."
Fluvanna Warden Barbara Wheeler denied that any housing decisions were made based on looks or sexual orientation, and said doing so would be discriminatory.
Inmates said life in the so-called "butch wing" or "locker room wing" wasn't much different than other units. But both inmates and employees said the unit was locked down more often than others, and the women said they were verbally harassed by staff.
The inmates and one current employee say the practice was stopped recently after the Associated Press began questioning it.
at 6:38 AM