(PORTLAND TRIBUNE) — An adult in custody (AIC) at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility in Wilsonville is seeking at least $800,000 in damages stemming from an alleged sexual assault committed by former nurse Tony Klein, who has been accused of sexually abusing many women at the prison.
In March of last year, the Spokesman reported that five other AICs had filed a $5 million lawsuit against Klein, the Oregon Department of Corrections and others for alleged rape and sexual assault. This most recent lawsuit filed Dec. 1 in federal court claims that Klein sexually assaulted plaintiff Connie Wilson during a medical appointment in 2017.
“Ms. Wilson initially froze with fear and was unable to speak. Her mind flashed back to a time when she was raped and nearly killed,” the lawsuit reads.
Following the assault, Wilson’s name continued to be on the medical call out list for days, but she refused to go, finally saying that “if she was called out again, she would not be coming alone,” the lawsuit reads.
Along with Klein and the ODOC, ODOC Director Colette Peters, Erika Sage, who was the ODOC prison rape elimination act coordinator, health services administrator Joe Bugher, former CCCF Superintendent Rob Persson and an unidentified nurse were named in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit states that: “While in the performance of their official duties, Defendants Colette Peters, Erika Sage, Joe Bugher, Rob Persson and Jane Doe were deliberately indifferent to a known or obvious risk of the serious harm of sexual assault of the female inmates by Klein.”
The suit later states that these defendants failed to monitor Klein while he was treating AICs, identify signs of potential sexual abuse such as Klein grooming AICs for future assaults, and enforce policies and procedures for staffing requirements during medical examination, among other allegations.
According to previous lawsuits, Klein targeted AICs with histories of molestation, abuse or rape and abused at least 15 women between 2009 and 2018. The recent lawsuit also states that 10 or more former employees of Coffee Creek have been convicted of sexually assaulting CCCF inmates from 2004 to 2017 and that at least 17 lawsuits have been settled in that time.
The recent lawsuit also states that Wilson’s post-traumatic stress disorder was exacerbated by the assault and that “she suffers from anxiety, fear, nightmares, loss of enjoyment of life and will suffer future emotional distress for which she is entitled to be compensated in the amount of $800,000.00.”
Wilson also seeks damages for future mental health care expenses.