Former Correctional Officer Pleads Guilty to Sexual Abuse of Inmate in Kentucky

Former Correctional Officer Pleads Guilty to Inmate Sexual Abuse

A former correctional officer at the Federal Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, has entered a guilty plea before U.S. District Judge Karen Caldwell for the sexual abuse of a ward.

The plea agreement outlines the officer’s illicit actions while employed at the facility.

Dates of Misconduct

The plea agreement details that the sexual abuse occurred between September 3, 2022, and September 19, 2022.

During this period, Dustin B. Sparks, aged 29, who served as a correctional officer at the Federal Medical Center in Lexington, knowingly engaged in sexual activity with an inmate on multiple occasions.

Justice Department’s Vigilance

Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco underscores the commitment of the Department of Justice in addressing sexual misconduct within the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

She emphasizes that any employee who abuses their authority and mistreats those under their custody will face accountability and prosecution.

DOJ-OIG’s Ongoing Investigations

Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz, representing the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (DOJ-OIG), affirms their commitment to aggressively investigate allegations of sexual abuse involving Federal Bureau of Prisons employees.

Today’s guilty plea sends a resounding message that such conduct will not be tolerated, and individuals responsible will be brought to justice.

Responsibility of Custodians

U.S. Attorney Carlton S. Shier IV for the Eastern District of Kentucky emphasizes the profound responsibility of those entrusted with the custody and care of inmates, both to the individuals in their care and to the public.

He reiterates the unwavering commitment to preventing and prosecuting criminal misconduct by those who hold this grave responsibility.

Investigative Efforts and Sentencing

The case was thoroughly investigated by DOJ-OIG, with assistance from the FBI Louisville Field Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Zach Dembo for the Eastern District of Kentucky is prosecuting the case, with sentencing scheduled for December 19.

Dustin B. Sparks faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and up to a $250,000 fine. The final sentence will be determined by a federal district judge, taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Federal Bureau of Prisons’ Commitment

The Federal Bureau of Prisons (FBOP) is resolute in its commitment to addressing misconduct within its ranks and collaborating with law enforcement partners to prosecute federal law violations.

The agency acknowledges the crucial role played by FBOP employees dedicated to achieving justice for victims of sexual misconduct as part of the Department’s ongoing reform efforts.

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