Skip navigation
× You have 2 more free articles available this month. Subscribe today.

Texas: $5 Million Settlement in TransCor Sex Abuse Case

In October 1999, prisoner Cheryl Schoenfeld was sexually assaulted by two TransCor employees while being transported through Texas. TransCor, a subsidiary of private prison firm Corrections Corp. of America (CCA), transports prisoners nationwide.

TransCor guards Michael Jerome Edwards and David Jackson forced Schoenfeld to expose her breasts and perform oral sex, and penetrated her vaginally with a flashlight and a gun barrel. Three prisoners testified that at one point Edwards pulled over and threatened to shoot them, saying he would claim they were trying to escape. Edwards previously had been accused of sexually assaulting a female prisoner he transported in New Mexico a month earlier.

Both Edwards and Jackson were charged with sexual assault. Jackson plead guilty while Edwards was convicted, based partly on DNA evidence, and sentenced to ten years plus a $5,000 fine. See: Edwards v. State, 97 S.W.3d 279 (Tex.App.-Houston, 2003).

Schoenfeld and Annette Jones, another prisoner who said she had been mistreated by Edwards, filed suit against TransCor on Feb. 24, 2000. The company agreed to settle the case in April 2002 for $5 million, $4 million of which was paid by its insurance carrier. Tim Maloney, Schoenfeld’s attorney, criticized TransCor for its “absolute and total disregard for ... prisoners’ rights, welfare and safety,” blaming the company’s apparent belief that “the most important thing is the bottom line.” See: Schoenfeld v. TransCor, U.S.D.C. (WD TX), Case No. 5:00-cv-00248.

Additional sources: Houston Chronicle, Tennessean, CCA Form 10-K (March 22, 2001)

As a digital subscriber to Prison Legal News, you can access full text and downloads for this and other premium content.

Subscribe today

Already a subscriber? Login

Related legal cases

Edwards v. State

Schoenfeld v. TransCor