A class action lawsuit has been filed by female inmates at the Kauai Community Correctional Center against the state over alleged harassment, sexual humiliation and public sexual degradation by the facility's warden.
Court documents say despite repeated reports and complaints of wrongdoing by Warden Neal Wagatsuma, the state failed to take appropriate action to remedy the abuses.
The lawsuit names Wagatsuma, the state Department of Public Safety and Ted Sakai, the director of the Department of Public Safety as defendants.
KCCC primarily houses pre-trial detainees, but some convicted inmates are also housed there.
Court documents say one of the inmates was forced to stand at a podium during an open public meeting with male and female detainees and KCCC staff. She was forced to talk about private, intimate and traumatizing sexual experiences.
These "public sexual shamings" took up to 45 minutes, according to court documents.
The warden is also accused of allowing male detainees to question and harass female inmates about their private sex lives during the public sexual shamings.
The lawsuit is asking that the plaintiff and class action members get compensatory damages and have attorneys fees covered. It is also asking for punitive damages against the warden.