The Illinois Department of Corrections has been named in a Class Action Federal Lawsuit for alleged sexual abuse and beatings of hundreds of prisoners, including at the Big Muddy River Correctional Center in Ina.
Published reports indicate an elite IDOC guard unit, known as the ‘Orange Crush’ rounded up and physically abused hundreds of prisoners in ‘shakedowns’ over periods of several days at the Big Muddy as well as the Lawrence, Menard and Illinois River correctional centers.
The suit alleges human rights violations, including violation of the federal Prison Rape Elimination Act.
The class action, brought by a prisoner at Illinois River, names at least 232 Orange Crush officers who allegedly “beat, sexually humiliated, and otherwise abused [hundreds of prisoners],” and “gratuitously inflicted punishment for the sole purpose of causing humiliation and needless pain.”
The federal lawsuit claims while chanting “punish the inmate,” the Orange Crush team conducted “a humiliating strip search in front of female officers” and ordered prisoners to march in line “so that one man’s genitals were in direct contact with the next man’s buttocks”, physically attacked prisoners who refused to comply, and gave “orders to stand in a stress position for several hours.”
The plaintiff is represented by Loevy and Loevy Attorney at Law, the largest civil rights firm in the Midwest, and Uptown People’s Law Center, a nonprofit national leader in prisoners’ rights litigation, both of which have been appointed by federal courts as class counsel in similar prison litigation and have won multi-million dollar verdicts.
According to the report, the IDOC had no immediate comment on the suit.