Delaware County Settles Sexual Assault Lawsuit With Former Female Inmates

Thursday, November 3rd 2011, 10:08 am
By: News 9

Associated Press

JAY, Oklahoma -- Delaware County commissioners have decided to settle a federal lawsuit by former female jail inmates for $13.5 million.

Commissioners voted unanimously Wednesday for the agreement, which District Attorney Eddie Wyant says was in the county's best interest.

The Tulsa World reports that former inmates accused the sheriff of covering for jailers who allegedly raped and sexually assaulted them. Sheriff Jay Blackfox wasn't accused of sexual assault and says he wouldn't have tolerated sexual misconduct by his staff.

Wyant says it would have been a huge gamble for the county if the case had gone to trial, adding there's no cap on what a jury could have awarded.

Plaintiffs' attorney R. Thomas Seymour says the money will be divided among the women based on the severity of the allegation.