A nationwide survey of prisoners found Montana State Prison has one of the highest rates of rapes and sexual assaults, but state corrections officials questioned the report’s methodology and said Wednesday it’s unlikely the problem is as bad as it seems, says the Associated Press. The U.S. Department of Justice survey of inmates in 233 state and federal prisons and 358 jails released last year identified Montana’s Deer Lodge prison as one of 11 with high rates of sexual victimization of inmates.
The survey conducted from February 2011 through May 2012 included 191 Montana prisoner responses. At the time, there were more than 1,440 inmates in the state prison. Seventeen Montana respondents reported inmate-on-inmate sexual assaults, a response rate that was third-highest among state and federal prisons surveyed. Nineteen inmates, or nearly 10 percent of Montana respondents, reported staff-on-inmate sexual misconduct — the second-highest rate in the survey. The national average was 2 percent of inmates reporting inmate-on-inmate assaults and 2.4 percent reporting staff-on-inmate misconduct, the survey showed.M