HOUSTON – An immigrant woman who accused guards of sexually assaulting her at a detention center was deported Monday, weeks after she was interviewed by investigators, the woman’s lawyer said.
Linda Corchado told the El Paso Times that the woman was deported to Mexico, just under a month after the she underwent a five-hour interview.
The woman alleged guards at the El Paso Processing Center forcibly kissed her and targeted her in places where they could not be seen by security cameras. After the Texas Tribune and ProPublica first reported the allegations, the Department of Homeland Security's inspector general opened an investigation into her case and allegations from at least two other people.
The woman is from Mexico and has two American-born children. She is not being identified.
Corchado said the woman told the inspector general and the FBI about the blind spots that guards allegedly used. She remained in the jail afterward.
“It was truly damaging to her to have to continue being detained and see her abusers all around her, to begin to be bullied by other detainees and guards," Corchado told the El Paso Times.
Corchado said U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement decided to deport her Monday and ordered her to change into civilian clothes by the evening, in what she called “the fastest deportation I’ve ever seen.”
ICE did not respond to requests for comment from the newspaper. It previously said the agency “has zero tolerance for any form of sexual abuse or assault against individuals in the agency’s custody and takes very seriously all allegations of employee misconduct.”