One jail deputy charged related to jail investigation
The Berrien County Prosecutor’s Office released the results of their review of an investigation into allegations of improper conduct at the Berrien County Jail. The investigation involved allegations by female inmates against four deputies.
The investigation involved four deputies who were alleged to have had sexual contact with female inmates or probationers.
Many of the 15 women interviewed for the investigation are involved in a federal lawsuit against the Berrien County.
The first deputy is alleged to have had sexual contact or a sexual relationship with two women he met as a result of his employment at the jail, but the contact allegedly occurred after their release.
The deputy is accused of paying a woman for sexual favors over several years, beginning in 2010. The woman spoke with deputies, but would not cooperate with the prosecutor’s office’s investigation.
Without her cooperation, the prosecutor’s office declined to file charges.
The same deputy allegedly deposited money in another woman’s prison account while she was in a state facility, had sexually explicit conversations using the state prison telephone service, and funded a shopping trip before initiating sexual contact, according to the prosecutor’s office.
After speaking with the victim, the prosecutor’s office determined at the time the alleged incidents occurred, the deputy was not in a position of authority over the woman and could not be coercing her based on his position.
A third woman, named in the federal complaint, has not reported allegations of sexual misconduct by any deputy to police investigators.
None of the conduct alleged happened within the Berrien County Jail.
Deputy 1 is no longer employed by the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputy 2 is alleged to have had contact with women who had been incarcerated at the Berrien County Jail and he me through his employment at the jail.
He allegedly sought contact with the women via Facebook, text messaging, telephone calls and through other inmates.
Although many of the interviews revealed discussions of a sexual nature with these women, only one alleged there was sexual contact or any offer of payment for sexual contact, according to the prosecutor’s office.
After reviewing her interviews with investigators, the prosecutor’s office says there was not enough credible information to base criminal charges.
No other charges involving any other women have been filed against Deputy 2 because there was o sexual contact in the jail, solicitation of sexual contact for money or coerced sexual contact based on his position in the jail, according to the prosecutor’s office.
None of the alleged incidents occurred within the Berrien County Jail.
Deputy 2 is no longer employed with the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputy 3 allegedly met with a woman outside the jail who he originally came in contact with while she was an inmate and he was a deputy. There were no allegations of sexual contact within the jail or solicitation of sexual contact for money, so no charges were filed against this deputy.
Deputy 3 is still employed with the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department
Deputy 4, Keegan Oscar Trail, 23, is alleged to have met with two women away from the jail following their incarceration at the jail.
The first woman he allegedly contacted through her online ad for companionship. He arranged to meet with her to engage her services as a prostitute, but when they met – no sexual conduct occurred, according to the prosecutor’s office.
The deputy was charged with offering to engage the services of another for the purpose of prostitution by payment of money. Trail was in court Wednesday and was arraigned on this charge.
He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to fines and costs in the amount of $505 and was ordered to perform 40 hours of community service.
Trail is alleged to have had contact with a second woman via Facebook. They allegedly had sexual intercourse in exchange for money in June 2014. The prosecutor’s office says this constitutes engaging the services of another for the purpose of prostitution by payment of money, but will not pursue charges as a result of a plea agreement.
None of the incidents alleged occurred in the Berrien County Jail.
Trail is no longer an employee of the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department.