Two transgender prison inmates are suing the state of Arizona and a former corrections officer, alleging that the guard forced them to engage in sexual acts.
The lawsuits filed in U.S. District Court allege the guard at the Lewis prison complex in Buckeye began by flirting with the inmates and then coerced them into the acts. The inmates were both born as males but identify as female.
The guard was arrested last June after one of the inmates called a federal prison rape hotline and the Department of Corrections opened an investigation. Juan Ignacio Ramirez Jr. pleaded guilty in November to attempted unlawful sexual contact with just one inmate and was sentenced to 10 years' probation.
His criminal attorney said Tuesday the relationship with the inmate was consensual.