Civil Rights Lawyers at Piccuta Law Group Settle Prisoner Sexual Abuse Case Against Monterey County Jail
Last week, civil rights attorneys from the Piccuta Law Group settled a civil rights claim against the County of Monterey and one of its Sheriff deputies—Marlon Alvarenga. The claims settled were related to a sexual encounter between Deputy Alvarenga and an inmate at the Monterey County Jail. The claims were settled for $50,000 without the need for filing a civil rights lawsuit against the Monterey County Jail or the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office.
The Facts From Which the Civil Rights Claim Arose
In October of 2018, Alvarenga worked at the Monterey County Jail where his responsibilities included guarding inmates in custody. The Monterey County Jail is controlled and staffed by the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office and its deputies. It houses both male and female inmates convicted of crimes in Monterey County.
While working at the jail, Alvarenga formed an inappropriate relationship with one of the female inmates. Our Monterey civil rights lawyers alleged, that while the inmate was out of her cell on cleaning detail, Alvarenga ordered her to come into a closet or small room. Once there, he became aroused and told the inmate to pull down her pants. He then engaged in a sexual act that was neither oral sex or sexual intercourse. Nevertheless, the act was sexual in nature albeit very brief. Another inmate who was on cleaning detail, interrupted Alvarenga within seconds of the sexual encounter starting and later reported the event to officials.
Upon information and belief, jail officials and/or Internal Affairs had been watching Alvarenga. Upon further information and belief, Alvarenga had been involved in other improper conduct in his role as a Monterey County Sheriff deputy, including improper relationships with other female inmates. Alvarenga admitted to the sexual encounter with the firm’s client and was arrested. The story was highly publicized throughout Monterey County. The story was reported by both television and print media outlets.
The Civil Rights Settlement Reached Against Monterey County Jail and the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office
The settlement reached was for $50,000 in exchange for a full release of all claims that the client had against Alvarenga, Monterey County Jail, Monterey County Sheriff’s Office and Monterey County. The settlement was reached within 90 days of the client hiring our Monterey civil rights lawyers. The settlement was unique in that the claims were resolved without the filing of a lawsuit. It is unusual to achieve a fair settlement against a County entity or law enforcement officers without the filing of a lawsuit.
The County claimed that it had interviewed the firm’s client after the event and that she stated that the sexual act was consensual and that she and the deputy were boyfriend and girlfriend. There were further facts that were unfavorable to the client including that she had a history of being in sexually open relationships. These facts, coupled with the fact that the sexual encounter was brief and not repeated over time, were heavily considered in agreeing to the settlement.
Further, at the time the settlement was reached, the client had finished serving her sentence at the Monterey County Jail and had been released. The client was without a job and was living on the streets. As such, the need for her to have funds to secure housing and make a fresh start were critical. The settlement funds provided to the client did exactly that.
Contact us if You Have a Civil Rights Case
If you or a loved one has a civil rights case, contact the Piccuta Law Group today. Our Monterey civil rights lawyers have extensive experience handling civil rights cases. We have handled civilian cases against law enforcement as well as prisoner cases against custodial facilities and their guards. Our civil rights attorneys have handled civil rights cases in both California and Arizona. Our civil rights lawyers handle all types of civil rights cases, including: police brutality, unlawful arrest, illegal search and seizure, wrongful tasering, First Amendment retaliation, correctional officer sexual abuse, prisoner cases, law enforcement misconduct, Bivens Claims, FTCA claims, excessive force, malicious prosecution, violations of the First, Fourth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments, Bane Act violations, among others.
About the author: The content on this page was authored and prepared by Monterey civil rights and personal injury attorney Charles Tony Piccuta. He graduated with honors from Indiana University-Maurer School of Law in Bloomington in 2006 (Ranked Top 35 US News & World Report 2018). Piccuta took and passed the State bars of Arizona, California, Illinois and Nevada (all on the first try). He is a trial attorney that regularly handles civil rights lawsuits and serious personal injury cases. He has obtained six and seven figure verdicts in both state and federal court. He has been recognized by Super Lawyers for six years straight. He is a member of the Consumer Attorneys of California, American Association for Justice, National Police Accountability Project and Arizona Association of Justice, among other organizations.
Disclaimer: The information on this web site is for informational purposes only and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, you should contact one of our attorneys and discuss your specific case and issues.