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Settlement for Michigan's female prisoners who claimed sexual harassment and rape

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Washtenaw County Circuit Court ended an ongoing legal battle last week that involved 500 female prisoners who alleged that they were sexually harassed and raped by Michigan prison guards during the 1990s. The state has agreed to settle the case for $100 million, which will be paid in six installments over the next five years to the victims.

Back in 2008, 10 female prisoners were awarded $15.5 million in damages for the sexual abuse they suffered while serving time at the Scott Correctional Facility. Moreover, in November of last year, a second jury awarded 8 other women $8.4 million who had also suffered sexual abuse while serving time at the Crane Correctional Facility in Coldwater. The state attempted to appeal the verdict, but was denied. The new settlement payout will erase the previous settlement amounts.

The Department of Corrections spokesman, Russ Marlan, stated that the state attorney general’s office recommended the settlement, but that the agreement does not “constitute an admission of liability, but a compromise of the disputed claims.”