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Case Number: 4:23-cr-00212
Judge: Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers
Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of California (Alameda County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office in Oakland
Description: Oakland, California criminal defense lawyer represented the Defendant charged with sexually abusing multiple female inmates and making false statements while he was a correctional officer at the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) at Dublin, California.
Andrew Jones, 36, of Clovis, California, pleaded guilty to the charges on Aug. 17. Today’s sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers.
“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 O. 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.”
“This ongoing investigation has unearthed evidence regarding the criminal activities of numerous employees at the Federal Correctional Institution at Dublin,” said U.S. Attorney Ismail Ramsey for the Northern District of California. “So far, seven correctional officers have been convicted of felony conduct involving sexual abuse of female inmates and an eighth employee has been charged with similar conduct. To be clear, this investigation is not over – correctional officers at FCI Dublin are trusted to secure the safety of inmates at the institution; the Department of Justice will continue to hold accountable any correctional officer who violates that solemn responsibility.”
“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,” said Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz. “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.”
“The defendant's conduct, sexually abusing inmates and threatening violence to keep them silent, is sick and reprehensible,” said FBI Deputy Director Paul Abbate. “Today’s sentencing comes amid relentless efforts to prevent abuse and misconduct by corrections personnel entrusted with the care and protection of others. The FBI will continue to work with partners to ensure the physical safety and civil rights of all individuals and hold accountable any public servant who abuses a position of trust.”
"Andrew Jones' record of abuse is abhorrent," said FBI San Francisco Division Special Agent in Charge Robert Tripp. "The FBI always stands in support of victims of abuse, and incarcerated individuals are no exception. Our dedication to protecting those who are most venerable is unwavering, and the FBI will continue to investigate allegations of such abuse."
According to his plea agreement, Jones was employed as a correctional officer at FCI Dublin where he supervised prisoners who worked in the Food Services Department. Jones 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 admitted that he sexually abused these prisoners in multiple places near the FCI Dublin kitchen, including a staff bathroom, a warehouse, and a room where kitchen utensils were kept.
In a memorandum filed in connection with Jones’ sentencing, the government argued that Jones “enforced silence and obedience” from the prisoners by using “violence and threats of violence.” The memorandum 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.”
In sum, Jones pleaded guilty to six counts of sexual abuse of a ward involving three inmates and one count of false statements to the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General (DOJ-OIG). In addition to the prison term, Judge Gonzalez Rogers also ordered Jones to serve ten years of supervised release, to begin after the prison term. Judge Gonzalez also scheduled a hearing for February 8, 2024, to consider issues related to restitution.
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. To date, all the recent sentences for FCI Dublin guards convicted of sexual abuse of a ward and/or abusive sexual contact of a prisoner have resulted in sentences that are above the U.S Sentencing Guidelines.
DOJ-OIG and FBI investigated the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Molly K. Priedeman and Andrew Paulson for the Northern District of California prosecuted the cases, with the assistance of Madeline Wachs, Sara Slattery, Christine Tian, Claudia Hyslop, Leeya Kekona, and Kay Konopaske.
FBOP is committed to rooting out misconduct within its ranks and working with law enforcement partners to prosecute violations of federal law. The numerous FBOP employees working diligently to ensure justice for the victims of misconduct are critical to the Department’s reform efforts.
18 U.S.C. 2243 provides:
(a) Of a Minor.-Whoever, in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States or in a Federal prison, knowingly engages in a sexual act with another person who-
(1) has attained the age of 12 years but has not attained the age of 16 years; and
(2) is at least four years younger than the person so engaging;
or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 15 years, or both.
(b) Of a Ward.-Whoever, in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States or in a Federal prison, knowingly engages in a sexual act with another person who is-
(1) in official detention; and
(2) under the custodial, supervisory, or disciplinary authority of the person so engaging;
or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than one year, or both.
(c) Defenses.-(1) In a prosecution under subsection (a) of this section, it is a defense, which the defendant must establish by a preponderance of the evidence, that the defendant reasonably believed that the other person had attained the age of 16 years.
(2) In a prosecution under this section, it is a defense, which the defendant must establish by a preponderance of the evidence, that the persons engaging in the sexual act were at that time married to each other.
(d) State of Mind Proof Requirement.-In a prosecution under subsection (a) of this section, the Government need not prove that the defendant knew-
(1) the age of the other person engaging in the sexual act; or
(2) that the requisite age difference existed between the persons so engaging.
Outcome: Defendant was sentenced to 96 months in prison.