Prison Guards Sentenced for Allowing Inmates to Rape Teen

shawn-freemanwesley-lanhamTwo former prison guards, Shawn Freeman and Wesley Lanham, have been sentenced for federal prison for 14 years and 15 years respectively for allowing inmates to rape an 18-year-old locked up overnight on traffic violations. U.S. District Judge Danny Reeves sentenced the two in an important — and rare — punishment for the prison rape — a largely ignored epidemic in our prisons.

Freeman, 31, and Lanham, 36, were former guards at the Grant County, Kentucky Detention Center. They teased the teenage about his slight appearance and told him that he would be made a “girlfriend” of other inmates. They then solicited the other inmates who raped him. They then falsified their reports. The teen was accused of speeding and fleeing a police cruiser on Feb. 13, 2003.

A third guard, Clinton Sydnor, pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against Lanham and Freeman. Reeves was sentenced him to seven years and six months in prison.

For the full story, click here.

45 thoughts on “Prison Guards Sentenced for Allowing Inmates to Rape Teen

  1. I know what ‘Frontier Justice’ I prefer for those two miscreants.

    Their punishment was not severe enough since they will be ‘buddies’ with the similar-minded rapists who committed the crime.

    People who make mistakes should never become subjected to sexual abuse in prison and reform is drastically needed.

  2. FFLeo:

    Put me in your corner on this one. Who puts kids in jail for speeding? Why the Bible Belt crowd, of course –aw and order you know. This is despicable, and one can only hope our fine jailers get a taste of the medicine they inflicted on a child. Call me an Old Testament guy in this situation.

  3. All I can say is that the Old Testament will work its way around for these guys. Prison guards are not exactly popular with the general inmate population. Odds are they will need protective measures which may (or may not) work.

  4. This makes me feel bad for that teenager. I doubt he will fully recover psychologically.

    I hope those former jailers will become better people.

    And people ask …”Why don’t you trust the police?”

  5. steadycat:

    “I hope those former jailers will become better people.”


    They have nowhere to go but up.

  6. Questions Arise About the Obama/Blagojevich Relationship
    Jake Tapper, ABC News
    December 09, 2008 3:37 PM

    “Obviously like the rest of the people of Illinois I am saddened and sobered by the news that came out of the US attorney’s office today,” said President-elect Obama this afternoon in Chicago, speaking of the criminal complaint against Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich for corruption. “But as this is a ongoing investigation involving the governor I don’t think it would be appropriate for me to comment on the issue at this time.”

    Asked what contact he’d had with the governor’s office about his replacement in the Senate, President-elect Obama today said “I had no contact with the governor or his office and so we were not, I was not aware of what was happening.”

    But on November 23, 2008, his senior adviser David Axelrod appeared on Fox News Chicago and said something quite different.

    While insisting that the President-elect had not expressed a favorite to replace him, and his inclination was to avoid being a “kingmaker,” Axelrod said, “I know he’s talked to the governor and there are a whole range of names many of which have surfaced, and I think he has a fondness for a lot of them.”


  7. I STILL say Turley needs to stop with the candy bars!

    He looked like he put on 40 pounds in the last two months when I saw him on re-write history rachael maddow’s hate fest on MSNBC.

  8. Who is this Mark? And why does he leave comments that have nothing to do with the subject of the blog-post?

    I sure hope he’s not a lawyer

  9. mark
    1, December 9, 2008 at 7:05 pm

    “I STILL say Turley needs to stop with the candy bars!

    He looked like he put on 40 pounds in the last two months”

    What are you, Jenny Craig?

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  11. What I find interesting is that JT attracts trolls at all. Not as a personal affront to JT, this is a popular blog and our host a fine fellow, but traffic wise you’d think the trolls would stick to more populated watering holes. Better hunting in a target rich environment. Not only is Res Ispa off the beaten track, the wildlife here is hostile if not dangerous to trolls. Given that a certain percentage of trolls are such because they suffer from borderline personality disorder or some other pathology and will choose targets for their own reasons. Given that some of our trolls have multiple identities. The conclusion I come to is that to merit attention at all, there must be something they fear in JT’s interpretation of the Constitution or perhaps they just make it a point to harass all of guests of The Big Giant Head, Keith Olbermann. I suppose it’s an honor in a way. They are of generally poor quality though – tangential arguments at best, no staying power, weak diversionary tactics, poor logic. That’s a reflection on them though, not the blog. They should start off hunting small game before coming to where the wild things are. The thing I like best is the pure futility of trolling here. Either they are very brainwashed, paid, psychotic, intrinsically evil or some combination thereof. I don’t know what their intent is, but trolling here will not win them any new friends. It may cause some of us to laugh at the trouncing they get, but such is (their) semi-sentient life. It’s hard to be a troll.

  12. pssttt . . . wake up . . . psst, hey, the secret to not being a troll is to wake up . . . psst . . . (pokes troll with pointed stick) . . . hey, wake up . . .

  13. Buddha,
    I think these trolls are really one or two different people who are blogging under several names. I wouldn’t be surprised if they are paid by some miscreant, but I have no evidence of that. The only thing that I know is that they do not aid in the discussion that goes on here and they should stick to their facebook pages.

  14. OH OH! At least some in the media are getting it:

    It raises the specter of notorious Chicago politics, an image Obama has tried to distance himself from during his career.

    There were signs the continuing investigation could still involve him.

    His statement that he didn’t have contact with Blagojevich about the Senate seat seems to conflict with that of top adviser David Axelrod, who told Fox News Chicago on Nov. 23: “I know he’s talked to the governor, and there are a whole range of names, many of which have surfaced, and I think he has a fondness for a lot of them.”

    Obama transition officials say Axelrod misspoke.

    It also appears that Obama friend Valerie Jarrett, an incoming senior White House adviser, is the person referred to repeatedly in court documents as “Candidate 1.” That individual is described as a female who is “an adviser to the president-elect” and as the person Obama wanted appointed to the Senate seat. Court papers say that “Candidate 1” eventually removed “herself” from consideration for the Senate seat.

    In a Nov. 11 phone conversation with an aide, Blagojevich talked at length about “Candidate 1” and said he knew that Obama wanted her for the open seat but “they’re not willing to give me anything except appreciation. (Expletive) them.”

    One day later, Jarrett, a Chicago businesswoman who is one of three co-chairmen of Obama’s transition team and was a high-level adviser to his presidential campaign, made it known that she was not interested in the seat. And, on Nov. 15, Obama announced that Jarrett would be a senior White House adviser and assistant for intergovernmental relations.

    Obama has maintained a cordial but distant relationship with Blagojevich during the governor’s tenure. He supported his fellow Democrat for re-election in 2006, even though the governor backed someone else over Obama in the U.S. Senate Democratic primary race in 2004. Obama has said little about the many misconduct allegations that have piled up against Blagojevich, and he has complimented Blagojevich for running “a sound administration” with “the right priorities.”

    Obama’s circle of major Illinois political allies and supporters is largely separate from Blagojevich’s, with two major exceptions. Both Obama and Blagojevich got extensive money and support from Chicago businessman Antoin “Tony” Rezko, who is now under federal indictment. And Obama is close to Illinois Senate President Emil Jones, who has been the governor’s staunchest legislative ally.

    At least one top aide to Obama, Michael Strautmanis, previously worked for Blagojevich. Obama has appointed Strautmanis to serve as White House chief of staff to the presidential assistant for intergovernmental relations and public liaison. The Chicago native was legislative director and counsel to Blagojevich when the governor was a member of Congress and then helped Blagojevich win the governorship in 2002. There is no indication that Strautmanis is involved in the case.

    More details on the case could be forthcoming.

    Court documents say they don’t include all calls dealing with the governor’s efforts regarding the Senate seat appointment. And many people in the documents are referred to by aliases; there’s little doubt their identities will eventually surface.

    In Chicago, Obama largely kept a low profile as word of Blagojevich’s arrest spread.

    more at

  15. Isn’t anyone going to come right out and say it? Okay, I will then. Mark, the professor is gorgeous on TV, and he’s so smart he doesn’t need to be.

    I have a feeling you spend a lot more time looking at Rush and Rove. Why don’t you go fix them?

  16. I am delighted when JT doesn’t look tired.

    Who cares if he looks ‘well-fed’ on TV.

    In reality, he is at least 10 pounds ‘under’
    ie quite ‘normal’.

  17. Hey! Someone figured out how to cut and paste! Do you want a gold star or an extra juice box at lunch? And I’m sending JT a box of Snickers.

  18. I working on it! In fact, we are going today to look at . . . you guessed it that New Years resolution favorite, the exercise machine. I blame Patty C and all those darn delicious recipes. The woman is my siren of destruction.

  19. Buddha:

    I appreciate the gratuity. However, Leslie is shaking down any friends and mail coming to the house. You might want to tape the snickers to your body Midnight Express style or placed within a hollowed out Bible if you are using the mail.


  20. LindyLou, You seem like a very admirable person.

    I found this article on “the evil that is fat:) ” on Alternet. It’s a breath of sanity on the subject.

    “This article originally appeared on Health Beat.

    The film opens with a fetching redhead puffing away on a treadmill. She’s perspiring, but she’s smiling gamely into the camera.

    “It’s not an average workout, but I wasn’t an average weight,” she explains. “I have to do above and beyond what any of you guys would have to do. I have to try twice as hard, sometimes three times as hard — just to maintain this level of … chubbiness.”

    And she is right. She is chubby. By 21st century mainstream (and magazine) standards of beauty, this young woman is probably 30 pounds overweight. The dimples, the ponytail, the strawberries-and-cream complexion and the undeniable on-camera charisma make her very appealing. But there is no doubt that most physicians would urge her to lose weight.

    Later in the film, we learn that she exercises three hours a day. And when her mother was dying of cancer, this thirtysomething nursed her and learned a great deal about nutrition. Dedicated and determined, she eats healthy meals and sticks to a strict exercise regime. Why, then, is she “chubby?”

    Doctors don’t know. That is one of the first things you learn in Fat: What No One is Telling You, a 2007 documentary that is, by turns, entertaining, moving and eye-opening. (The PBS home video, directed by Andrew Fredericks, can be rented on or purchased on”

  21. Jill,

    Three hours a day of exercise!!! That sounds really interesting, and thank you for making it so easy to find. It’s now at the top of my Netflix queue. Alternet must have made it popular–it has a “short wait.”

  22. I working on it! In fact, we are going today to look at . . . you guessed it that New Years resolution favorite, the exercise machine. I blame Patty C and all those darn delicious recipes. The woman is my siren of destruction.

    Sorry, ‘Moose’…😉


    And here, I thought mespo was the only one interested in my recipes.

    I meant what I said about the camera adding 10 pounds. I think you look good, but you have eluded to wanting to get in better shape, so I, and the other ‘turlees’ will be supportive.

    Right, guys?

    You have to start your day with a good breakfast
    – no ‘starving’ yourself.
    p.s. Good for you, JT!

  23. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It is however counterproductive to have more than one.

    There’s nothing wrong with getting a little merrier around the holidays, it’s cold outside damnit. Plus it has the added bonus of expediting the new years resolution process. All that extra money being spent for home exercise equipment will spark the economy, so really JT is doing everyone a favor and we should thank him for it.

  24. “When we lose twenty pounds… we may be losing the twenty best pounds we have! We may be losing the pounds that contain our genius, our humanity, our love and honesty.”

    ~Woody Allen

  25. Mespo:

    Your quote has brought tears to this endomorphic academic’s eyes. Truth be known, we are still deciding on the exercise equipment. We would not want to rush into anything. It turns out that you have to actually be on the machine to lose the weight. I had assumed it was something you watch like a self-improvement video. We went to Nordic Track, Life Fitness, Spirit, and a couple of other makers. All had the same flaw: the need to actually exercise. Why pay a couple grand for that? I find myself falling back to my old friend, Mr. Snickers. In my sleep, I hear him “Mr. Snickers never lies, Mr. Snickers loves you the way you are.”

  26. Buddha, that’s mean. I am going to start calling you the

    I hope you at least sent some good healthy organic Costa Rican dark chocolate – for cold and flu season, or, alternatively, a beauiful box of Harbor Sweets (Marblehead, MA)- my personal fav for the holidays.


    “After losing her home and business in the October 2007 fires, San Diego-based chocolatier Mariella Balbi of Guanni Chocolates created the “After the Fire” collection featuring exotic flavors from her native Peru. Made from organic cacao, natural ingredients and free of any preservatives, chemicals or waxes, the collection includes chocolates flavored with pumpkin, Pisco (Brandy), Aruma (hot pepper), Bukare (a dark chocolate), Cusco with Aji Amarillo (yellow hot pepper), candied citrus peels and muña(Andean herb), Maca, Goji berries and more. Guanni also makes several varieties of chocolate bars, vegan and sugar free truffles and pastries which are all rolled and decorated by hand.

    The After the Fire Collection is available in sets of nine chocolates for $24 and twelve for $32 from Guanni Chocolates.”

  27. Patty C 1, December 11, 2008 at 10:06 am

    JT, why not hire a personal trainer to get you started?
    You guys could do pilates at home.

    Of course, you can ‘multi-task’ (watch TV , answer the phone etc) on a treadmill…

    Or consider a resistance pool like ‘Hydroworks’ – something fun you can enjoy as family.

    You’d have to teach Madie and Aiden to swim, of course.

  28. Patty C:

    I thought about a personal trainer, but once again there is that disconnect. One of us is an athlete with less than an ounce of fat and the heart capacity of a leopard. Yet, it is the middle aged fat guy that has to do all of the running and weight lifting. That does not seem “form follows function,” to cite Mies Van der Rohe.

  29. Right and no doubt you would the first one of ‘those’ he/she will have ever seen…

    I think you might enjoy having ‘a buddy’. Someone knowledgeable and fun to asses your level of fitness, create a starter program, show up, listen to you bitch, and motivate you in spite of yourself.

    And you still have at least four other little ‘personal trainers’ of your own, to cheer you on and to go on walks with you and the dogs after dinner.

    You will be a different person after a month – guaranteed.

  30. My cardiologist says the key to health is to get the heart pumping rapidly for about 20-30 minutes. To that extent, guys like Bush, Chenet et als. have been a godsend for my health since my blood pressure invariably spikes every time I hear them speak. Now that our former AG has chimed in with his take on detainee due process, I feel fit enough to run an obstacle course. (Their Con Law/Crim. Pro professors must be very proud)

    With the new Administration, I may have to reignite my workout regimen. I am now deciding between grueling marathon training, or sitting before the plasma god and watching others run, jump and collide catching a leather ball while I lift twelve ounce negative progressive weights. At my age, i suspect I already know the winner here!

  31. Oh, and on the exercise equipment, save your money. Unless you want it to be a family night event, you’ll find it to be your clothes valet after about 3 months of ownership. I suggest you form a faculty dodge ball team and play your 1,2 & 3L’s on a weekly basis. It’s fun, team building, and let’s the students have a little “back at ‘cha” for inflicting “Pennoyer v. Neff,” “International Shoe,” or those damn “standing” cases on them. We actually had a faculty/student racquet ball/squash program in Law School and it was attended with gusto by all involved.

  32. I will throw my two cents in (which today is a haypenny) and suggest you belay the “exercise” notions and instead opt for a good 30 minute walk, 3 times a week.

    I am assuming you are in your mid to late 40’s, and have not done strenous exercise up until now. If so then adopting a strenuous exercise routine just to lose a few pounds may not be the best course. One muscle that must build up before you go trying to build up others is the heart muscle, and the heart muscle responds best to gradual improvements.

    I would find a place I enjoy walking at. Some place with some good up and down hills, scenery and a generally pleasant atmosphere. The C&O can be good, particularly if you hit the stairs, but it can be crowded. Carderock has some great trails and of course if you live in Georgetown then there are nice streets with great hills particularly if you’re heading further up towards Chevy Chase circle (which would bring the added pleasure of stopping in at Nanny O’Brians for a pint of pure pleasure).

    You might even get a dog, just for a companion on your thrice weekly pleasure jaunts. Not a little yapper mind you, that you have to drag along with you, but a good, healthy beast who will drag you up the hills and deter the more surly passerby’s you may encounter on your mini journey’s.

    Of course consistency is the key to acheiving benefits so you’ll have to convince yourself that you are not exercising but merely indulging in a selfish treat so as to encourage yourself to continue regularly but that shouldn’t be too hard. We all walked when we were young and I find at our age, doing anything that makes us feel like “when we were young” is an easy sell.

  33. JT,

    Have you considered the benefits of a giant keyboard? Having to hop from R to L every time you type your last name would certainly keep you in shape. As an added bonus, the succinctness that would become your trade mark would only add to your already impressive aura of wisdom.

  34. Patty C:

    We need a good health shake or smoothie for JT. I can’t find any that taste better than cardboard or taste gritty. Any ideas? I really enjoyed Orange Julious’ but I haven’t seen a stand in years.

  35. Patty C:

    I will assume that “asses your level of fitness” is not a reference to my problematic professorial posterior and that you did not transpose the first and second words.


    I am afraid that diet and exercise would only push me to one day each the dog in a fit of hunger.


    Having just given my final, a sporting event with the students would likely turn into that scene of the kids chasing “Piggie” in Lord of the Flies.

  36. Waynebro:

    “I am afraid that diet and exercise would only push me to one day each the dog in a fit of hunger”

    You could always opt for a hot dog.

  37. you guys just need to stfu one of the jail gaurds was my dad he had nothing to do with it so you guys need to just shut up you dont no the whole story like real talk you guys are low as fu** for sitting here and talking stuff get a life kay thanks

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